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Papua New Guinea is signatory to a number of international organizations which deals with forest and environment issues. These include:

a) International Tropical Timber Agreement (ITTA) which gives the mandate for the International Tropical Timber Organization (ITTO) to perform its functions.

b) Inter-governmental Panel on Forests (IPF) under the United Nations Commission of Sustainable Development This is an ad hoc Panel dealing with the sustainable management of all types. There is no legally binding instrument associated with the IPF as yet, but Papua New Guinea is an active participant through the National Forest Service.

c) Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD). The Department of Environment and Conservation deals with this Convention. However since issues of biodiversity are interrelated with forest issues the National Forest Service closely observes the deliberations and decisions of the Convention.

d) Melanesian Spearhead Group. There is a scope for Papua New Guinea to assist the Melanesian Spearhead Group States in Logging Codes of Practice, log export monitoring and surveillance and training of personnel.

e) South Pacific Forum. The Papua New Guinea Forest Authority, representing Papua New Guinea is a key player on deliberations on forestry issues.

f) Human Resources Development (Forestry) Project. This is a major project funded by AusAid. The main emphasis of the project is human resource development in the forestry sector including forestry training and institution building. Also involved in the project are: the University of Technology, Bulolo Forestry College and Timber Industry Training College.

g) Log Export Monitoring and Surveillance. The project is undertaken by a Swiss company, Societe de Generale Surveillance (SGS), and is funded largely by the European Union The main emphasis of this project is to ensure that proper accountability and value for logs being exported are accurately documented for government tax purposed.

h) Growth and Yield Studies. The Growth and Yield Studies is a research project that is funded by the Japanese Government, and is administered by the Japanese International Cooperation Agency (JICA). This project has been in operation since 1993 and the JICA team of researchers operates out of the Forest Research Institute in Lae. A major seminar is scheduled for November 1998 for the project to present it's findings. It is anticipated that the finds will have major policy implication to cuttings cycles, species and diameter limits.

i) East New Britain Balsa Project. This project is funded by International Tropical Timber Organization (ITTO). The objective of the project is to expand the Balsa wood industry after the volcano in Rabaul. Balsa is a fast growing tree and is harvested after 4-5 years and is considered an alternative income base in rural community development

j) Timber Product Marketing Study. A study to evaluate the marketing strategies for Papua New Guinea Timber products being funded by the International Tropical Timber Organization. The study commenced in 19% and is expected to be completed in March 1998. The purpose of the study is to assess the market, possibility of a voluntary marketing organisation and market intelligence and viability of processing of timber in Papua New Guinea.

k) Forest Inventory Mapping (FIM). Funded by AusAid, this project is the continuation of an earlier project - the Rapid Resource Appraisal (RRA) project - which started in 1995. At the completion of the RRA Project, the Forest Authority sought an extension to update forest resource information through scanning and digitizing of the resource maps. This project is on going and the output will assist the NFS to determine the volumes of forest resources available, especially in new forest potential areas

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