The implementation of the Timber Legality Verification System (SVLK) is often not obeyed. Denial of policies related to the protection of natural forests is still found in the field. Activists continue to urge the government to tighten supervision and provide strict sanctions for companies that have been proven to have violated the implementation of the SVLK.

Dynamic Coordinator of the Independent Forestry Monitoring Network (JPIK) Muhamad Kosar, said SVLK was an effort built by the government to combat illegal logging and trade in illegal timber. The implementation of SVLK is also an effort to realize good forest governance or good forest governance in Indonesia. SVLK is mandatory for all companies in the forestry sector both upstream and downstream.

“SVLK implementation requires companies to obey the rules that apply, including avoiding social conflicts with communities around the concession, not utilizing timber from protected areas that are set by the company, and for the wood industry not using wood raw materials without SVLK certificates,” he said.

The three aspects above are a number of prerequisites for graduation in the verification process. The search results conducted by JPIK, and a number of civil society organizations found that there were still non-compliance with license holders with the implementation of the SVLK, especially in the provinces of North Sumatra, North Kalimantan and North Maluku.

“The provision of strict sanctions against companies that violate SVLK rules is absolutely applied by the government, both companies that move upstream and downstream,” Kosar said.

He revealed, to date conflicts still occur between the community and the Toba Pulp Lestari HTIPT (PTTPL) company in Simalungun District, North Sumatra. The logging and deprivation of Kemenyan forests belonging to indigenous peoples by TPL companies is the cause of conflict and eliminates the sources of people’s lives.

“Another finding from the results of field monitoring is that PT. TPL is also logging commensurate rivers and protected areas within the concession,” said Kosar.

Violations of SVLK rules are also carried out by the HTIPT company Adindo Hutani Lestari, which is located in Nunukan Regency, North Kalimantan. Within the PT Adindo Hutani Lestari concession, logging and land clearing were found in the deep peat area. “Land clearing in deep peat areas and logging practices in protected areas clearly violates SVLK rules,” he said.

Not only that, the company has indicated that it has taken over community land due to boundary uncertainty and not through Free Prior and Informed Consent (FPIC). “Indications of violations are also found in the distribution and supply chain of wood to the downstream level, namely the primary wood industry,” he added.

Forest Watch Indonesia (FWI) campaigner Mufti Barri added, in Luwu District, South Sulawesi, the largest timber industry company in Sulawesi was strongly suspected of receiving wood supplies from sources that did not have legality. The source of the wood comes from the PT Mohtra Agung Persada concession company in Central Halmahera Regency, North Maluku.

“Data on the realization of the Industrial Raw Material Fulfillment Plan (RPBBI) up to November 2015 shows that PT Panca Usaha Palopo Plywood is still receiving wood from PT Mohtra Agung Persada totaling 10,155.11 cubic meters,” he said.

This of course shows the weakness of the supervision system regarding the circulation of logs applied by the government. “The RPBBI document that is owned by the Ministry of Environment and Forestry should be able to maintain that only timber from legal sources must be consumed by industry,” he said.

Conversion of natural forest without SVLK carried out by PT Mohtra Agung Persada will cause conflict and a negative impact on the carrying capacity of the environment in Central Halmahera. The difficulty of accessing information related to company activities is the main obstacle to supervision from the community.

“Information disclosure in forest management is the key so that people know which legal and illegal company activities are,” he said.