Environmental News Archive

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Indonesia still discussing granite export ban: Ambassador Wardana

By Satish Cheney, Channel NewsAsia
13 March 2007

SINGAPORE: The Indonesian government is still discussing whether to ban the sale of granite, says the Indonesian Ambassador to Singapore.

Mr Wardana said this to reporters on the sidelines of a cultural showcase held at the Indonesian Embassy in Singapore on Tuesday.

He said: "Up to now there's no decision related to the banning of granite, but this afternoon.....in Jakarta, I think they had a discussion related to the matter because of our concerns related to the environment aspect of this (granite) mining.....The cost of the environment is also very big....the value of the export of sand in 2005 was only US$6 million for the whole year, incomparable to the damage to the environment."

In Jakarta earlier Tuesday, Indonesia's Foreign Minister Hassan Wirayuda was quoted by the Jakarta Post as saying that the Indonesian Cabinet was discussing the possibility of banning granite exports.

But Indonesia's Trade Minister Mari Pangestu, speaking at the end of the Cabinet meeting, contradicted Mr Hassan's comments.

She said that the Cabinet did not discuss the possibility of including granite in the current ban on the sale of land sand.

She also confirmed that the current regulation of allowing granite exports had been verified by authorities.

Indonesia's earlier ban on the export of sand has forced Singapore builders - among the biggest buyers of sand - to look to alternative sources.

The Singapore government has also released sand from its stockpile.

If granite exports are also banned, it will impact Singapore's construction sector further. - CNA/ir