Featured in FORETS/MAG (OCT-DEC 2021)
Forest Economy and Innovation
GABON WOOD INDUSTRIES
A pioneering company in the sustainable management of forests. (By Ines AKELE)
Established in the GSEZ of Nkok since 2012, Gabon Wood Industries (GWI) is undoubtedly one of the most prolific companies in the timber industry in Gabon, combining both exploitation and processing. Its industrial facilities in Nkok cover 12 hectares while its forest concessions are estimated at 400,000 hectares.
We were interested in the strategy implemented by GWI within its different production units (harvesting, sawing, drying, containers handling, processing) to guarantee the sustainable development of forests
The response from the Forest Management Department was very simple because for GWI, “It’s well known that the Gabonese forest administration itself has a robust system in sustainable development and any forest concession following this regulation is in line with sustainable forest management”. And to be closer to sustainability, Gabon Wood Industries has placed all its forest concessions under sustainable management (CFAD), following a rigorous process of validation of Development plans.
Inscribed therefore in this logic of sustainable management useful as much for the economy, the environment and the social, anxious to reinforce its commitment in the sustainable exploitation of the forests of Gabon, GWl seized the invitation made by the President Ali BONGO ONDIMBA to all forestry companies, to be certified according to the standard FSC (Forest Stewardship Council) by 2022.
This adventure led GWI to improve its harvesting techniques in the field. Training was given to sharpen the teams’ knowledge in controlled felling. Also, the internal monitoring methods have been revised, thus allowing the modernization of procedures. This resulted in a better quality of production at all levels.
In addition to these procedures which guarantee the good management of its production units and wood processing chain,
GWI hired TEREA, a consulting company specializing in the environment and sustainable forest management, to help its facilities move towards international certification. GW has been TRACER certified since 2019. A Due Diligence System by the ZERP of NKOK which certifies the traceability of logs, recognized by the European Union timber regulations EUTR) since September 24, 2021. For the forest management department of GWI, “all these efforts are made for the sake of the well-being of forests but also of the economy Gabonese in mind “
GWI Worker Interview
Boubamba Sylvie – Downstream
Boussoyi Rita – Wood Grader