As a major emitter of greenhouse gasses from deforestation and the caretaker of a large chunk of the world’s remaining tropical forest, Indonesia finds itself at the top of the United Nations’ climate change agenda.

Yet despite a pledge by Norway to give the country $1bn as part of the UN’s landmark programme to reduce emissions from deforestation (REDD), progress has been painfully slow because of weak governance and rampant corruption. Continue reading »

By Jacek Siwek of Asia Pulp & Paper

Indonesia is the largest of south east Asia’s economies. It is also home to the third largest expanse of tropical forest in the world. Matching the demands of a growing population to the protection of some of the world’s most valuable forestland is a tough challenge and one felt in many timber-producing developing nations. It is a challenge to which governments and companies are responding. Continue reading »

It’s a tough time to be a pulp producer – something at which South America excels: the eurozone crisis sent demand for paper plummeting in the second half of 2011 and things look set to remain bleak for a while with three major new projects due to come onstream in Brazil and Uruguay in the next year boosting supply further.

So Latin American companies – Brazil’s Fibria is the world’s biggest pulp producer and Chile’s Arauco and CMPC are also in the top five, with Brazil’s Suzano about seventh – would have to be mad to think of unleashing yet more capacity on a depressed market, wouldn’t they? Maybe not. Continue reading »

Doing business in partnership with Hugo Chávez does not usually go hand-in-hand with pleasing the market.

Yet investors piled into Chilean forestry and wood panel company, Masisa, on Monday after the Venezuelan president announced plans to create a joint-ventureContinue reading »