Jakarta (ANTARA News) - Indonesia and the United States have agreed to combat illegal logging by providing more complete equipment in exporting the wood, a Forestry Ministry official said.

"The cooperation with the US is important as it is one of the biggest destination of our wood exports after Europe and Japan," Agus Sarsito, director of international cooperation at the Forestry Ministry, said here Friday.

The US promised not to receive illegal logs from Indonesia, Agus said after closing a workshop in related issues.

"Indonesia has agreed with the US and some other countries that only legal logs can enter those countries," he added.

In addition, Agus also said that the ministry would have further cooperation with the Industry Ministry, Trade Ministry and Finance Ministry to ban illegal log exports more effectively.

"The Forestry and Trade Ministries will revise the regulation on trade to make the program run well. And last but not least is cooperation with the customs and excise directorate general because it is the last gate in Indonesia for domestic products," Agus said.

Moreover, he said, the cooperation between Indonesia and the US would help the reduction of illegal log exports.

Combating illegal logging cannot be done alone and therefore, there need to be cooperation with other countries not to receive illegal logs, he said.

Meanwhile, Deputy Chief of Mission of the United States Ted Osius said the partnership was the right solution to combating illegal logging and in dealing with climate change in the world.

"It`s really a comprehensive partnership because it`s all about working together for better world. And there`s nothing I can think of, that it`s more important than the other challenges of climate change. So, Indonesia government is the true partnership in this area," Ted said.

Ted confirmed that illegal logging cases in Indonesia were getting reduced as the time goes by due to the development of tools used.

"Indonesia has developed the tools to combat the illegal logging and some researches showed that the trend of illegal logs coming out in Indonesia is going down. We`re happy to support such effort of Indonesia," he said.

The US supports the Government of Indonesia`s leadership on climate change and commitment to reduce emissions 26 percent below business as usual and up to 40 percent with international assistance.

One of the efforts to conserve Indonesia`s forests is to combat illegal logging and associated timber trade. The US and Indonesia demonstrated their mutual commitment to combat illegal logging and associated timber trade by signing an MoU in 2006.

Editor: Priyambodo RH
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