Friday, December 17, 2004

Strong Indications that PT IKPP Pulp Mill, Perawang Riau, Received Illegal Wood in July 2004

Press Release: Forest Rescue Alliance, Riau,
Pekan Baru, 14 September 2004

Background A huge raw material deficit in the pulp and paper industry is triggering illegal practices in Indonesia?s ever-depleting forest stock. Forest crime involves bureaucrats, business people, law enforcement officers, politicians and even community workers, so is hard to detect, let alone curb. What?s more, it?s costing Indonesia an estimated 85 billion rupiah (around US$9.26m) a day (Inform, 2004). Two of Indonesia?s seven pulp and paper companies are located in Riau province, Sumatra. These two companies together have an annual pulp production capacity of 3.7 million air-dry tons and need about 17 million ton of raw material from natural forest each year. The two pulp and paper companies have to source about 70% of their annual pulpwood supply from the natural forest because their acacia plantations do not produce enough plantation wood to fulfill their annual raw material demands. More

Greenpeace Exposes New Evidence of APP’s Illegal Logging in Yunnan

16 December 2004, Beijing - Greenpeace China today presented new evidence exposing Asia Pulp & Paper’s (APP) illegal logging and large-scale forest destruction in China’s Yunnan Province.

On 16 November, Greenpeace published the “Investigative Report on APP’s Forest Destruction in Yunnan”, which led to extensive media coverage and huge public outcry on the issue. On 24 November, APP released a response to our Investigative Report, stating that Greenpeace’s claim is “unrealistic and irresponsible”.
Mr Ke Xiang-sen, the vice-president of APP told reporters “the APP operation in
China had never logged any natural forest” (1). In response to APP’s false claim, Greenpeace today exposed the new evidence on APP’s vast forest destruction and illegal logging in Yunnan Province based on 3 field investigations. This includes documentary video, in-situ logging photos and interviews with the local community.
The evidence shows that massive forestland areas had been cleared for the plantation of eucalyptus as a result of APP’s plan. Much natural forest has just been logged recently and the oldest tree found has a girth, which could be surrounded by 3 adults. In the video, local cadres and farmers from the Xiang Shui He village confirmed APP’s logging of natural forest. In a memorandum between the Yunnan Lancang county government and APP Lancang Company, it stated the coverage of 1,100,000 mu (73,333 hectares) of forestland and bush land out of the 3,000,000 mu (200,000 hectares) plantation of eucalyptus. Greenpeace also presented statistics from the local Forestry Station about APP’s eucalyptus plantation plan this year, which covers 750 mu (50 hectares) forest area, 1,848 mu (123 hectares) thin-forest land and 932 mu (62 hectares) bush land. All the above forest was replaced by eucalyptus plantation before November 2004. The local communities are outraged at APP.
Liu Bing, Forest Campaigner of Greenpeace
China, said, “APP refused to admit their illegal logging activities in front of the array of evidence. Hence, we have the responsibility to further expose their criminal evidence to the public.”

Over the last month, Greenpeace raises 6 demands on APP:

  1. Immediately stop logging natural forests and promise not to replace natural forest with plantation in Yunnan province, admit previous logging mistakes publicly, make compensations where appropriate;
  2. Put a moratorium on the Project, conduct a truly transparent and independent assessment of the past, present and future operation of the Project involving the relevant stakeholders, revise APP’s current plan to guarantee the protection of China’s natural forests and the compliance with all the illegal procedures and authorizations as are required by the Chinese Government;
  3. Respect the rights of local communities, ensure fair benefit-sharing with local people;
  4. Develop a time-bound action plan to implement the commitments above as well as the wood purchase policy for the Hainan Mill;
  5. Implement the action plan in full and have regular transparent monitoring and independent verification of the progress;
  6. Withdraw the court case against the Zhejiang Hotel Association (ZHA) unconditionally and apologize publicly to the ZHA for filing the case in the first place.

However, APP rejects Greenpeace’s six demands and declines to make any commitments publicly.
Zhong Yu, Forest Campaigner of Greenpeace
China, said “we are sorry to see that APP ignores the voice of the public and NGO. At this moment, APP is destroying China’s forest and environment, using manpower and loans from China. Greenpeace calls for consumers to stand up and say no to APP! ”
filed an official report with the State Administration of Forestry on the illegalities involved in this project on Nov. 16, 2004. According to the law, relevant agencies will have to reply within 60 days. We have full confidence that the Chinese government will take appropriate action in light of protecting Yunnan’s precious natural forests.

For more information:
Liu Bing, Forest Campaigner
(+86)13911291510, (86-10) 65546931-132 e-mail:
Zhong Yu,
Forest Campaigner
(+86)13888060370, (86-10) 65546931-107 e-mail:
May Zhou, Media Officer
(+86)13910036849 (86-10) 65546931-105 e-mail:

Notes to Editors: (1) The Economic Observer, 4 October, 2004.

Thursday, December 16, 2004

APP sues Chinese hotel association for defamation

APP have swung into action against the Zhejiang Province Hotel Industry Association in China that have taken action against APP for their irresponsible and destructive practices. There is a Kyodo News International story online:

Southeast Asian logging giant sues Chinese hotel association

By Ralph Jennings, Kyodo News International, Tokyo
Knight Ridder/Tribune Business News

Dec. 10--BEIJING -- Asia Pulp & Paper Co., a major Southeast Asian logging company, is seeking 2.2 million yuan (about $266,000) in damages from a Chinese hotel association, arguing the association defamed APP by asking its members to quit using the firm's paper products based on reports of harmful forestry practices, the hotel group's legal advisers said Friday.

APP filed the lawsuit against the Zhejiang Province Hotel Industry Association with the Hangzhou Xihu District People's Court on Nov. 30. The company has also demanded a public apology from the association.

This is a classic SLAPP suit -- a Strategic Lawsuit Against Public Participation.

A US legal website describes the suits this way:

In contrast to most litigation, the SLAPP suit is brought, not to resolve a problem, but to remove a controversy from the political arena-- where the developer may be loosing-- to the judicial arena where the "chill" and expense may enable the developer to seize victory from defeat.

Monday, December 13, 2004

WWF on APP Policy on Hainan

WWF has posted some information about the Hainan mill policy.

7, Dec 2004

APP announces new purchasing policy

Jakarta, Indonesia - WWF welcomes the recent Asia Pulp and Paper (APP) announcement that its new pulp mill in Hainan will not accept wood from old-growth forests or tropical forests that have high conservation value. WWF is also pleased to learn that APP is putting this pledge into practice by canceling orders of wood chips from Tasmania and southern Australia.
More at WWF.

Thursday, December 09, 2004

New APP Hainan mill old-growth and HCVF policy

The APP mill on Hainan Island in China has announced a new policy for sourcing old-growth and HCVF fibre and a review of the Yunnan mill's sourcing. From

APP announces wood purchase policy for Hainan mill and independent review of Yunnan operations
BEIJING, Dec. 2, 2004 (Press Release) - APP China has announced its wood purchase policy for the newly commissioned Hainan pulp mill at Yangpu, Hainan.

The policy prohibits the mill from purchasing wood from old growth forests and requires the mill to eliminate from its supply chain any wood from tropical forests that has been identified as being High Conservation Value Forest (HCVF).

Wednesday, December 08, 2004

APP to Set Debt Deal For Indonesian Units

The Wall Street Journal, December 6, 2004

APP to Set Debt Deal For Indonesian Units

Report on APP's Forest Destruction in Yunnan, China

Links of the Investigative Report on APP's Forest Destruction in Yunnan
Chinese Version
English Version