Difference between revisions of "Documentation:Open Case Studies/FRST522/Eco-Forestry in Madang Province, Papua New Guinea"

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===Political Context===
 
===Political Context===
Clashing world views have fuelled historical and on-going tension between the Government and customary landowners undermining co-operation in the forest industry. PNG's indigenous tribes have their own social ordering and citizens' primary allegiances belong to non-state social organizations (Sinclair, 1991, p. 10). There is public disrespect for the Government and it is conceived as an enemy figure (Larmour 1997). The Government, established hundreds of years after the existence of PNG's tribes, has struggled to assert its control over citizens (Sinclair, 1991). Government corruption and violence have become the norm and police systems have evolved to include raids and displays of militaristic power with incidents of death, abuse property destruction and theft (Sinclair, 1991). There is mutual distrust between local communities and the police (Sinclair, 1991). Corruption has impacted the forest industry as evidence indicates transfer pricing and mismanagement where customary landowners are cheated of profits (Sincalir, 1991).
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There has been historical and on-going tension between the Government and PNG's indigenous citizens (customary landowners). Cooperation in the forest industry is undermined as the social culture and traditions of customary landowners do not align with the Government's views and objectives. It is important to recognize that PNG's indigenous tribes have their own social ordering where customary laws have a greater ability to impact conduct than government laws<ref name="sinclair">Sinclair, D. (1991). Law, Order and State in Papua New Guinea. State, Society and Governance in Melanesia, 97(1), 1–13</ref>. Citizens give show little respect for the Government who is perceived to be an enemy <ref name="larmour">Larmour, P. (1997). The Governance of common property in the Pacific region. National Centre for Development Studies (1997), Australian National University Press (2013). Canberra</ref>The Government, established in 1975<ref name="sinclair"/>, much after the existence of PNG's tribes, has struggled to assert its control over citizens <ref name="sinclair/">. Government corruption and violence have become the norm; police systems have evolved to include raids and displays of militaristic power with incidents of death, abuse property destruction and theft<ref name="sinclair"/>. There is mutual distrust between local communities and the police<ref name="sinclair"/>. There is evidence of corruption impacting the forest industry as reports indicate transfer pricing and mismanagement where customary landowners are cheated of profits<ref name="sinclair"/>.  
  
 
===Eco-Forestry in Madang Province, Papua New Guinea, 1997-2007===
 
===Eco-Forestry in Madang Province, Papua New Guinea, 1997-2007===

Revision as of 14:44, 7 December 2017

Summary

In the late 1990's an NGO-led eco-forestry movement sought to empower customary landowners across Papua New Guinea (PNG). Timber was sustainably harvested using portable sawmills and NGO's provided financial and technical resources, developing small-scale community-based enterprises where timber could be processed and sold. Although eco-forestry was a model of development, benefitting customary landowners both socially and financially, the Government of PNG favoured and continues to favour large-scale and foreign-owned logging operations. This wiki page follows the eco-forestry program initiated by the Madang Forest Resource Owners Association and supported by NGO's the Foundation for People and Community Development, Greenpeace and Imported Tropical Timber Association in Madang Province, 1998-2006. Issues of land tenure and political dynamics threatening the long-term viability of eco-forestry in Madang are analyzed and discussed. Recommendations suited to empower customary landowners target interested and affected stakeholders: the MFROA, NGOs and the Government.

Introduction

Papua New Guinea's Forest Industry: An Overview

PNG's economy is largely dependant on the country's abundance of natural resources including tropical timber [1]. In 2006, various forest types covered more than 80 percent of the country's land, offering lucrative business and development opportunities[2]. The Government of Papua New Guinea (the Government), customary landowners and foreign-owned logging companies are major players in PNG's forest industry. Owning 97 percent[2] of land in PNG, customary landowners reside in rural areas and face challenges related to limited economic opportunities in addition to a lack of health and education facilities [1]. Undermined by the Government, customary landowners have little power in the development of their own forest resources[3]. Customary landowners must create civil society groups backed by funding provided by donor groups while the Government favours resource development by way of foreign-logging companies[4]. Dominated by the alliance-like relationship between the Government and foreign-owned logging companies, PNG's forest industry is characterized by large-scale timber extraction. The Government is responsible for orchestrating a process in which foreign logging companies earn massive profits at the expense of customary landowners who depend on forests, maintaining their traditional lifestyles.

Political Context

There has been historical and on-going tension between the Government and PNG's indigenous citizens (customary landowners). Cooperation in the forest industry is undermined as the social culture and traditions of customary landowners do not align with the Government's views and objectives. It is important to recognize that PNG's indigenous tribes have their own social ordering where customary laws have a greater ability to impact conduct than government laws[5]. Citizens give show little respect for the Government who is perceived to be an enemy [6]The Government, established in 1975[5], much after the existence of PNG's tribes, has struggled to assert its control over citizens Cite error: Closing </ref> missing for <ref> tag
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