GFC contradicts minister’s report on Bai Shan Lin’s operations
Guyana Forestry Commis-sion (GFC) data on the operations of Chinese logging firm Bai Shan Lin (BSL) contradicts statements by Minister of Natural Resources and the Environment Robert Persaud regarding the joint ventures and harvesting activities engaged in by the company, raising further questions about the accuracy of information being supplied to the public by the authorities.
“Bai Shan Lin has access to three concessions where full scale harvesting operations are being undertaken,” Persaud told Stabroek News in May last year. However, last week Commissioner of Forests James Singh told reporters at a press conference that of Bai Shan Lin’s four joint venture (JV) arrangements, two were granted this year. This indicates that BSL would not have had approval to harvest logs in a third location last year as the areas to which the company has direct access to, are still at the State Forest Exploratory Permit (SFEP) stage.
Persaud did not respond to requests by Stabroek News for clarification on this and several other matters. For months, the minister has refused to respond to several issues queried by Stabroek News.
In May last year, when asked about the size of the area Bai Shan Lin had access to, the minister told Stabroek News that these were acquired through “legally approved JV arrangements” and he explained that BSL has access to three concessions where full scale harvesting operations are being undertaken. He had not indicated the three areas.