Punjab govt orders issuing of licences to wood based units

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Chandigarh, Jan 9 (UNI) The Punjab Government today finally cleared the decks for issuing licences to wood based industries for purchase of wood for the 5271 units in the state.

Disclosing this here Forest Minister Tikson Sud said that his Department today issued orders to all the Divisional Forest Officers (DFOs), who are competent authorities, to grant licences to the applicants in accordance with the Punjab Regulation of Saw Mills, Veneer and Plywood Industries Rules, 2006.

The Minister said that the Department had earlier notified the prescribed licence fee for various categories of wood based units.

The DFOs were also ordered to write to the competent authority to restore power connection of the closed wood based units after issuance of the licences.

Mr Sud appealed to the entrepreneurs to cooperate with the Range Level Committees, that would inspect the premises of their units to verify the machinery before the grant of licence. A total of 5271 saw mills, veneer, plywood and other wood based units will be benefited by the decision of the state government.

The State Government had taken the approval of Central Empowered Committee (CEC) for issuing licences to the wood based units. All the 4929 units established before October 2002 and 342 units established thereafter and those that had deposited one time payment as ordered by CEC are entitled for licence.

All the owners of wood based units should apply to the DFOs immediately with the prescribed licence fee for obtaining licence, the minister added.

The Forest Minister said that even after meeting the timber requirement of 25.00 lakh cubic metres, there will be an annual surplus of 7.00 lakh cubic metres wood for the new units which are expected to come up in the state. In addition, 9.5 lakh cubic metres wood is available from roots, lops and tops for establishing medium density fiber board and particle board plants.

The Minister said that 59 entrepreneurs have already deposited one time payment for establishing new units and scores of new applications have been received from the entrepreneurs through CEC.

Mr Sud said that the government was encouraging agro-forestry to benefit both the farmers and the industry.

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