Nature Development Foundation (NDF), a non-governmental organisation on Tuesday launched a website with the aim of promoting the legal trading of timber in the country.
The website is also expected to assist both buyers and sellers with a common platform to easily transact their businesses.
The foundation also introduced a mobile application known as Ghana Timber Market on the Google Playstore to help both vendors and customers have easy access to a ready market
Launching both platforms, the Director of NDF, Mustapha Seidu said the difficulty associated with finding vendors who trade in legal timber would soon be a thing of the past as both platforms sought to address challenges confronting the sector.
He said mobile application and website would only host legal lumber vendors and link them up to prospective buyers.
According to Mr Seidu, there was the need to modernise the timber business in the country as people only saw the business as transitory.
He said illegal wood had become easily accessible and dominant on the market thereby making it difficult for consumers to identify vendors who trade in legal timber.
“With this website, only registered and certified vendors can be found on it and I believe it would help to sanitise the market as well as ease the work of the Forestry Commission,” he added.
Mr Seidu said both platforms had been piloted in some parts of the Greater Accra and Ashanti regions with some vendors expressing their reservations.
He said the reservations of the vendors had been considered and factored into both platforms, adding that they would be trained and sensitized on how to effectively use both platforms.
He, therefore, urged vendors to register with the Timber Industry Development Division (TIDD) of the Forestry Commission to ensure they are certified to engage in legal business.
Mr Richmond Chris-Koka, Director at Gain ExLabs, developers of the website and mobile app, said both platforms would be managed by the Forestry Commission and would have to approve timber products before they are uploaded.
He said it would also allow both customers and vendors to send feedback to the Forestry Commission.
Mr Chris-Koka advised vendors and customers to judiciously use both platforms to grow their business and purchase legal wood.
BY JEMIMA ESINAM KUATSINU