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Ministry launched revamped website and tree planting dashboard

The Honourable Minister for Forestry Mr Osea Naiqamu today launched the Ministry of Forestry’s revamped website and tree-planting dashboards. The website has new and innovative features that are aimed at better informing everyone who is interested in forestry and nature. The website’s refreshed and simplified look, combined with enhanced content, improved search functionality, and optimization for all devices allows visitors to better interact with and do business with the Ministry.

Online Import/Export Application

The Ministry of Forestry has revamped its website www.forestry.gov.fj with new and innovative features that will ensure the quick and efficient delivery of services to the people of Fiji.

Minister for Forestry Hon. Osea Naiqamu today announced the new look website saying a key feature of the website is the inclusion of an online web form for export and import applications.

“The online system will enable the Ministry to issue licenses within 24 to 48 hours, on the condition that all relevant information is provided. Making the application forms available online is part of the Government’s response to the ease of doing business. It is in line with calls made by forestry sector stakeholders in recent consultations,” Minister Naiqamu said.

He added this is part of Government’s efforts to help reignite the economy in the new normal of the COVID-19 pandemic.

“In saying this, the Ministry anticipates an abundance of timber from the maritime zone in particular from the pine trees planted in Kadavu, Gau and the Lau Group of Islands. In Kadavu alone, up to 90 percent of trees in the 11 pine schemes have been affected by Tropical Cyclone Harold, thus creating the urgency to harvest them. The immediate focus now is on rehabilitating houses that were destroyed by Tropical Cyclone Harold.

“I am very pleased to note that our men and women on the ground are helping the communities to harvest the trees and re-purposing them for houses.”

Minister Naiqamu said the effort is progressing well through ongoing collaboration with the Ministry of Rural and Maritime Development, the Ministry of Housing and Community Development and the Republic of Fiji Military Forces, among other agencies.

“The plan is to rebuild homes before trading any surplus timber. Having a steady supply of good quality treated pine timber will no doubt be welcomed by the local construction industry. Government is also encouraging the export of any surplus timber to help generate much needed revenue.”

Tree-Planting Dashboard

In addition to the online import and export applications, the Hon. Minister for Forestry also launched two tree-planting dashboards https://survey123.arcgis.com/share/a68827d999f240548d63d76e1d0f9360 

He said, the first is the public tree-planting dashboard which will enable any member of the public who plant trees to log in and provide details such as their names and contact, the types and number of trees planted, the location and photographs.

“The Ministry will then validate the information through physically checking on the ground before the details are transferred into the second dashboard. The second dashboard will contain only the validated information. This dashboard has so far recorded over 1.2 million trees and mangroves. The rest of the trees and mangroves will be added into the dashboard as soon as the information have been physically validated.”

Minister Naiqamu said that the dashboards will keep the public informed there is progress with the ultimate goal of planting 30 million trees and mangroves within 15 years.

He said that Fiji’s tree-planting initiative, which His Excellency the President launched in January last year, is gaining much traction.

“With the help of the communities, we have so far planted over 1.9 Million trees and mangroves, covering close to 2,000 hectares. Specifically, we hope to encourage more Fijians to actively participate in Fiji’s tree-planting revolution.

“This has now become one of our core functions aimed at protecting the environment, enhancing biodiversity, and addressing climate change.”

Minister Naiqamu said he has every confidence that this tree-planting target can be achieved through the commitment of Ministry staff, the willingness of the Fijian public, partnership with the private sector, the support of development partners, and through investment in technology.

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