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Timber Exporters request lower tariff

Timber Exporters request lower tariff

Timber exporters in the country have stressed that they cannot afford to pay the government’s new export tariff of $10,000 per container of timber.

They say they have already paid the old tariff of $1,000 per container for the shipment of the  consignment that was at present held at the Freetown port, before government’s introduction of the new tariff in December last year.

The Chairman of the Agricultural Community and Timber Development Association (ACOTIDA), Allan Barrie said that the new tariff was too exorbitant for them. He appealed to government to either release the consignment they had already paid for on the old tariff or reduce the new tariff to enable them recoup their investment on the consignment.

But, the Ministry of Agriculture and Forestry retorted that the exporters had never negotiated with them on the new tariff. Mark Bockarie, the Assistant Director Commercial of the Forestry Unit, told journalists that government was insisting on the payment of the $10,000 fee for one forty-feet container of timber before the consignment could be released for export. The increase in the export fee coincided with the ban the government imposed on the export of timber. The timber export ban is still in force.

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