Forest Minister Govind Singh Thakur today said that initiatives of the present state government have helped in minimizing the losses to the state Forest Corporation. He said the Corporation which was incurring huge losses in the past years was a cause of concern for the government. Stocks of unsold khair-wood, rosin and timber in sale depots continued piling up due to delays in taking decisions, absence of any marketing strategy and lack of vision of the previous government.He said that under the leadership of Chief Minister Jai Ram Thakur, the management was given a free hand to carry on market research to understand trends, fluctuations and seasonality in the demand and supply of forest products. As a result, the management revisited and rationalized the upset prices for the old unsold stocks. Forest products such as timber, khair-wood being perishable in nature require prompt disposal as delays result in blocking the capital and decline in quality.Therefore, all out efforts were made and sale was attempted through e-auction, open auction and by calling expression of interest.He said that as a result of aggressive marketing the Forest Corporation was able to liquidate 1935.5 cubic meters of old stock of khair-wood from January to September this year and realized Rs.9.69 crore.
Similarly, 4768.55 cubic meters of old timber which was lying unsold in sale depots for more than one to two years was sold off at Rs.9.44 crore. Considering the market trend, the designated sub-committee of the corporation fixed realistic sale rates of Rosin and Turpentine oil. As a result, the corporation was able to dispose-off old stock to the extent of about 20 crore from January to September, 2018.The Minister said that the Forest Corporation was showing signs of recovery as was evident from the fact that an amount of Rs. 19.24 crore had been paid as royalty with effect from January, 2018 to September, 2018 compared to Rs.3.53 crore and Rs. 5.03 crore released during the same period in 2016 and 2017 respectively.Besides, the Corporation has paid GST amounting to Rs. 1851 lakh up to September, 2018 and the annual deficit in the balance sheet of 2017-18 came down to Rs. 1600 lakh which was Rs. 3443 lakh in 2016-17, added the Minister.Govind Singh Thakur said that these efforts of the state government have helped in improving the financial health of the Corporation and all endeavours would be made to minimize the losses further and to turn it into a profitable organization.