Indonesia: Government prepares new forestry permit order

Hans Nicholas Jong, The Jakarta Post 17 Dec 15;

In a bid to improve management of the forestry sector, the government is revising Government Regulation No. 6/2007 (PP No. 6/2007) on forest management, planning and use.

The Environment and Forestry Ministry said on Wednesday that the revision would be a priority next year.

The ministry’s social and partnership forestry director general, Hadi Daryanto, said that it was important to revise the regulation as much of its content was complicated and contradictory.

He said the contradicting parts had been fixed in the latest draft of the revision.

“Regents no longer have the authority [to issue permits or recommendations]. This revision will speed up the permit process so that these recommendations [from regents] are no longer needed,” he said on Wednesday.

Hariadi said the regulation had led to inefficient forest governance, causing trillions of rupiah in state losses.

“If we look at the study done by the KPK [Corruption Eradication Commission] in 2013 on the cost of obtaining forestry permits, as well as injustice in the sector with 97 percent of the permits going to big businesses and only 3 percent going to small businesses, we can clearly see that we need to fix the system,” he said.

KPK investigator on the forestry sector, Hariadi Kartodiharjo, said the government was in the process of combining two existing drafts of the revision.

“There are two separate processes [for the revision] at the ministry. The first draft was made during the tenure of Zulkifli Hasan. And now there’s the second draft initiated by Hadi, but the focus [of the second draft] is only on social forestry. These two drafts are being combined by the ministry but they haven’t received input from civil society organizations,” he said.

Hariadi said the government should also change the current paradigm of the forestry permit system through the draft revision.

“In the current [PP No.6/2007], all permit processes start and depend on the private sector. They have to look for their own maps, regents, resulting in high economic costs. According to the KPK study, it costs Rp 5 to 10 billion to process a permit,” he said. “So the current system is very much passive. In the future. The government should be active in handing out permits because it should know where its natural resources are.”

According to Hariadi, the PP explains forestry permit issuance procedures in too much detail, leading to a bloated permit issuance process.

“PP No. 6 breaks down Law No. 41/1999 on forestry in too much detail, such as an overly rigid and procedural permit attainment process, resulting in high permit costs,” he said. “For example, every commodity in a forest needs its own permits, leading to too many permits needed to be obtained. What we want is for a production forest to only need one permit.”

Furthermore, the PP led to legal uncertainty in regard to who had the authority to issue forestry permits.

Law No. 23/2014 gives the authority to the provincial governments, while PP No. 6/2007 gives authority to regional governments.

The government should make sure that the revised regulation allows provinces to regulate their own forestry sector, Hariadi said.

“People in Papua doesn’t have a permit system that is catered toward their culture. They are still hunting, so we can’t use scientific forestry. We have to use local wisdoms [for the permit system in Papua],” he said.

No comments:

Post a Comment