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South Punjab Forest Company (SPFC) organize inception seminar at Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI); Sensitize business community to invest in forestry sector

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October 17, 2016:The officials of the South Punjab Forest Company (SPFC) met Abdul Basit, the newly elected president of Lahore Chamber of Commerce and Industry (LCCI) and discussed ways to foster partnership between the two.

The delegation of SPFC was represented by Tahir Rasheed, Chief Executive Officer (CEO); Salman Ahmad, Chief Financial Officer (CFO); and Muhammad Awais, Director Projects and Operations.

The meeting aimed to discuss the opportunities SPFC offers to the investors and also to incorporate the concerns of LCCI representatives to make the process inclusive, which can also be incorporated in the upcoming feasibility study.

Tahir Rasheed, CEO, SPFC, briefed Abdul Basit, President, LCCI about SPFC, that it’s a Punjab Government entity, established as a Public Sector Company, which aims to stimulate private sector investment alongside public money to reduce deforestation in Punjab and to combine forest conservation with sustainable economic development.

According to Tahir Rasheed, ‘The Punjab Forest Department after approval of the Government of Punjab assigned a blank area of 134,995 acres to SPFC that mainly falls in D.G. Khan and Bahawalpur Civil Division. The company aims to reforest the designated blank areas of Punjab Forestry, Wildlife and Fisheries department, which will help to create new jobs in rural areas and providing sustained source of raw material to the industry.

The investment objective of the Company is to encourage the investment in assets that can be established and managed on an environmentally and socially sustainable basis.

Abdul Basit, President, LCCI, urged the SPFC officials to brief the members of LCCI the next month, so that the concept of sustainable forestry can be promoted. He also said, ‘There’s a need to educate people regarding this concept and media can play an important role by raising awareness regarding it.’

SPFC aims to achieve SDGs Goal 15 ‘Life on land’, which focuses on managing forests sustainably, restoring degraded lands and combating desertification etc. The initiative will eventually contribute to reducing pressure on the existing forests. Halting deforestation is also vital to reducing the impacts of climate change.

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