Chin State eyed for pine resin extraction
30 October 2013: Two Japanese companies, Mitsubishi and Marima Co. Ltd., visited Chin State in an effort to conduct a survey on the possibility of extracting pine-related products such as resin and turpentine.
Senior members of the companies arrived in the Chin capital of Hakha on 17 October, meeting with ministers and officials of the Chin State government.
They discussed issues pertaining to pine plantation, protection and production of resin and turpentine, according to the New Light of Myanmar.
Chairman of the B2 Group Co. Ltd. Pu Sui Hingz, who participated in the meeting, told the Hakha Post that if a Chin factory were established to produce pine resin, the Japanese companies would purchase the product.
During the Burmese parliamentary sessions held in Nay Pyi Taw in October 2011, Chin MP Pu Con Kheng had raised a question over plans to resume extraction of pine resin in Chin State.
U Win Tun, Union Minister for Environmental Conservation and Forestry, had said that the project would be reopened if foreign investment came into the sector.
He had also said that the Forest Department had planted about 5.9million pine trees in 9,100 acres in Chin State since 1981, allowing the Myanmar Paper and Chemical Industries to extract 150,000 viss (1 viss = 1.633 kg) of pine resin.
Run under the supervision of the Forest Department, factories constructed near Falam and Hakha towns for producing resin and turpentine had been suspended reportedly in the late 1980s by the then military dictatorship.
In August this year, a community-based discussion was held in Hakha over plans to construct factories in Bungzung and Loklung villages, Hakha Township for production of pine resin and hardwood.
Their conclusions included the need to ensure that the development projects bring benefits to local communities in a transperant, equitable and accountable manner.
The Group of Research and Exchange of Technologies (GRET), a French INGO that has been in Chin State for over 17 years, reported last year that some families in Zathal village of Hakha Township extracted pine resin to supplement their incomes.
According to a report posted in 1995 by FAO (Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations), resins extracted from two pine species, Pinus kesiya and P merkusii, in Chin State were used to produce rosin and turpentine, which are good for making polish, paints and medicines.
The government’s newspaper said that pine trees are found in eight out of nine townships in Chin State.#