The Beninese government has introduced an indefinite ban on timber exports until further notice, a senior member of the cabinet confirmed on Thursday.
The Senior Minister and Secretary General of the Government told a press conference in Cotonou that the ministers of Home Affairs, and Transport have been notified to take all necessary measures to enforce the ban.
Pascal Koupaki who was presenting the report of Wednesday’s weekly Council of ministers’ meeting however pointed out that the government was temporarily lifting a moratorium on the marketing of wood nationally. This is aimed at relieving the actors operating in this job-creating and income-generating sector which is poorly organized, the cabinet minister said.
He pointed out that the felling of timber for use in the country is authorized only on a provisional basis. On Benin’s education sector, which is considered in very bad shape, the council is putting together a technical committee tasked with the implementation and monitoring of reforms of schooling system.
The committee is responsible for definition government policies regarding vocational training with a view to strengthening young people’s access to the labour market. The committee has 45 days to submit to the government the fruits of its engagement.
The Council of ministers, presided over by President Patrice Talon, has finally decided to build a Knowledge and Innovation Free Zone” whose mission is to boost research and innovation in order to create more jobs. To that end, a steering committee was established to finalize within 30 days the legislative framework of the proposal, regulatory and tax scheme of the desired free zone.
It will further reflect on the location, mission and objectives, mode of operation and management of the agency in charge of the free zone and the strategies to adopt to gather international and external financial resources.