6 Oct 2005

Deal reached in Fiji on sustainble regional forest management

4:49 pm on 6 October 2005

Public officials from six Pacific countries have for the first time declared their shared goals of sustainable forest management.

Agreement has been reached on the final form of the document after talks in Fiji.

They say they all depended on forestry for their existence.

Ben Lowings reports.

"The officials are from Fiji, Papua New Guinea, Solomon Islands, Vanuatu, Samoa and Tonga. They have been meeting for four days to exchange experiences of forest management. Taxpayer-funded participants in the conference put off a visit to a poorly managed forest yesterday to enable them to go shopping in Fiji's second city, Lautoka. The final document says in the Pacific there is currently unequal distribution of benefits and opportunities. It says there is a lack of policy consistency and there has been unwise investments and week governance."