MLT undertakes timber harvesting for MWTI as well as third parties. Timber harvesting is dependent on seasonal factors and timber prices. As the LRB Group has its own concessions, it is often cheaper for it to source logs through extraction rather than to purchase logs from third parties. However, this is not always the case and thus the LRB Group’s strategy is to purchase logs when their prices are competitive and to extract logs when prices are high. This also enables the LRB Group to preserve its log resources which is of a depletive nature over a longer period of time.
Pre-harvesting activities including boundary survey, marking of buffer zone, access road construction are carried out under Jabatan Perhutanan Negeri Perak’s (JPNP) supervision. Guided by the conditions imposed as per the logging permit (such as minimum cutting girth for various species, gazetted prohibited species etc.), JPNP will then carry out timber enumeration and tag the trees accordingly.
Heavy equipment such as bulldozers, excavators, log grippers and logging trucks are employed for logging activities including skidding, hauling and road construction and maintenance.
During felling, chain saws are used to fell the selected trees. The skilled fellers apply directional-felling techniques to minimise damage to the logs as well as the surrounding trees. In this respect, it must be noted that the fellers can only fell those trees that are predetermined by JPNP by reference to the tags.
Prior to removing the logs from the log yard for delivery to MWTI’s sawmill in Gerik or for sale to third parties, it is necessary for the logs to be cessed by JPNP for royalty payment which is determined according to the species and volume of the logs concerned.
The volume of logs transported from the operating area currently worked on by MLT to the log yard, which is approximately 30 kilometres away, is dependent on weather conditions. As the log yard is situated about 5 kilometres from the trunk road leading to MWTI's sawmill in Gerik, (a distance of 50 kilometres), it only takes approximately 2 hours for MWTI to transport logs from the log yard to its sawmill.