Analysis of the illegal logging volume made by WWF experts
Vladivostok. Russia. Nikolay Patrushev, the secretary of the Security Council of Russia, conducted an offsite meeting with the heads of the Far Eastern Federal District regions and representatives of the federal ministries.
Measures on how to combat criminal activity in forestry were discussed at the meeting. WWF’s experts prepared an ad hoc analytical report on illegal turnover of timber and proposed structural recommendations on how to solve the problem.
«Since 1999, WWF draws attention of the authorities to the criminal business of “black loggers” demonstrating inefficiency of the governmental control, increasing corruption and formation of a “forest mafia” fed by cash of the neighbor Heavenly Empire, noted Yury Darman, head of WWF Russia Amur branch.
“Comparative analysis conducted by WWF Russia shows that from the period 2004-2011, the volume of some valuable hardwood species logged in the Russian Far East for export to China exceeded authorized logging volumes by 2-4 times. Thus, our harsh predictions turned to be correct. This is proved by the statement done by Presidential Envoy to the Far Eastern Federal District on the necessity to put things in order in the forest sector in the Russian Far East and conduction of the thematic meeting of the Security Council itself.”
Nikolay Patrushev, the secretary of the Security Council of Russia has criticized the local authorities for their inefficient use of the potential capacity of the Far Eastern Federal District’s forests.
«The Russian Far East encompasses 43% of forest reserve lands of Russia and 25% of all Russian timber, noted Nikolay Patrushev at the offsite meeting held in Vladivostok. - With that, the way the local high potential is being used cannot be regarded as satisfactory so far.»
'On the whole, the Far East owns only 7% of timber logged in Russia while the region encompasses one quarter of all Russian timber.”
Nikolay Patrushev added that in recent years the profits taxes of the forest industry enterprises reduced by 6.5 times.
“Over 70% of all funds circulating in the forest industry of the Russian Far East go through the shadow schemes, mentioned Patrushev.
'Law enforcement agencies should take serious actions to liquidate the shadow schemes of mutual settlements in the forest industry. And there is a huge spread of work, noted Patrushev at the meeting in Vladivostok.
Nikolay Patrushev described the expansion of scale of the criminal profit reallocation in the prejudice of regional budgets as one of the key system problems of the industry. He thinks that one of its reasons is “the lack of proper level of responsibility among governmental agencies for the results of forest use”.
'Thus, the supervision over interactions in the industry is slack, added Patrushev. - In this context the number of economic crimes increases. High shadow income from illicit timber turnover contributes to corruption of the forest industry.”
'Volumes of illegal logging in Primorye have been shaped into something extraordinary, noted Yury Trutnev, Deputy Prime Minister of Russia and Presidential Envoy to the Far Eastern Federal District. – We are holding the Eastern Economic Forum soon and after that I definitely will address the issue. I will personally hunt down a question why people of a concrete region of Russia run things in the forest the way they want!”