New regulations to accelerate the process for obtaining manufacturing licenses have kicked in.
The changes, proposed by India’s Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change, are contained in the Wood Based Industries (Establishment and Regulation) Guidelines and apply to all states and territories. Each state and territory is required to constitute a State Level Committee (SLC) to implement the new regulations.
Prior to these guidelines, companies had to apply to the Centrally Empowered Committee (CEC) in New Delhi, through individual state/territory Forest Departments.
The SLCs are required to assess the availability of log raw materials for every mill once every five years and decide whether or not the mill should continue at its present location or move to an area with a better supply of logs. To determine the log raw materials available in a given area the SLVs will commission studies in collaboration with institutes of higher learning, which will take into account the volume of wood available locally as well as that coming across state boundaries.
In the North Eastern States of Arunachal Pradesh, Assam, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Tripura and Sikkim wood-based industries are only permitted within industrial estates. For mills utilising only imported logs the SLC will determine the impact of these mills on the viability of mills using domestic logs and if necessary move to protect these mills.