Himachal Forest Corporation reports Rs 108 Cr profit

Shimla: The Himachal Pradesh State Forest Corporation, the sole agency supply timber to the people in the state, reported an income of Rs 108 crore for 2009-10 at its board meeting today which was presided over by chief minister Prem Kumar Dhumal.

Against a turnover of Rs 135.16 crore for 2008-09, the forest corporation recorded an increase of 18.5 percent for 2009-10 where the total business carried out was worth Rs 160.29 crore.

The board was informed that in 2009-10 the corporation sold 103,672 cubic meters of timber wood. Mandated with carrying out the business in resin and turpentine, the corporation recorded a business of Rs 43.65 in the financial year where as it was 32.45 in the previous year.

The 34.51 percent increase recorded in the business was mainly due to increase in turpentine and resin prices which had increased from Rs 55 per liter in April 2009 to Rs 69 per liter and from Rs 42 to Rs 74.50 per liter respectively. Resin and turpentine businesses had shown an increase of 16 percent at Bilaspur depot and 23.5 percent at Nahan depot, the board reported.

He said that State had vast potential of resin, which was being extracted with ecological safeguards in a scientific manner by the skilled manpower so that the natural growth of pine trees was not disturbed.

Being a monopoly business, as green felling in the state is banned, timber needs are only met by purchasing from the forest corporation, which has 6 Hikashtha – whole sale depots and 41 retail timber sale depots from where local demands are met.

The Shimla depot did a business of Rs 1.16 crore and was expected to touch Rs 1.50 crore in the current year.

As part of expanding its business the corporation intends to set up a window and door manufacturing unit from quality timber at Kullu. A timber treatment unit was also being set up at Jhaniari in Hamirpur and Baijnath in Kangra.

To monetize upon scenic locations, the corporation had also set up two eco-tourism units at Narkanada and Jalori that had fetched an income of Rs 10 lakhs.

Besides RK Gupta, MD of the corporation, those present at the board meeting included Avay Shukla, Additional Chief Secretary Forests, Ajay Tyagi, Principal Secretary Finance and Dr. Vinay Tandon, Principal Chief Conservator of Forests among others.

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