BANGALORE: A K Verma, Principal Chief Conservator of Forests, Karnataka, announced that the Ministry of Forests was in the process of relaxing some rules to help the woodworking industry obtain raw materials, and said that the supply of wood was to be met from plantation timber, and not forests. He said that a new scheme was being drafted to give incentives to people who undertake plantation on their lands.
He was addressing the inaugural session of INDIAWOOD 2012, an annual exhibition of 550 exhibitors from 31 countries, which is held from February 10-14, at the Bangalore International Exhibition Centre.
R K Mathur, secretary, Micro, Small and Medium Industries, Government of India, said that the industry was growing at a rate of 15 pc in 3 fields like furniture, interiors and handicrafts.
“Although exports is nill, wooden furniture worth nearly 1 billion$ is being imported. Timber exports is currently estimated at Rs 5 crore,” he said.
Pradeep Devaiah, chairman of PDA Trade Fairs, appealed to the government to take steps towards including woodworking sector under the Ministry of Micro, Small and Medium Industries, instead of the current classification under the Ministry of Textiles which he termed as inexplicable.
“Wooden furniture manufacturing units remain small, which limits the ability of Indian manufacturers to meet the demands for furniture in the country,”Devaiah said.