REPUBLIKA.CO.ID, PEKANBARU - Haze that hit several areas in Riau mostly came from if forest fires in industrial timber plantations and foreign plantations owned by Malaysian and Singapore. Head of Forest Fire Services in Riau, Rahidi said the indication emerged after the Weather Monitoring Satelitte and Geothermal Detection (NOAA) showed 148 hot spots in Riau.
"Data of NOAA shows most of the hot spots are in area of industrial timber forest (HTI), such as PT Langgam Inti Hibrida which is owned by Malaysian businessmen at Sering village in Pelalawan district. Next, PT Bumi Reksa Nusa Sejati, a Malaysian-owned company at two plantation location area, around Simpang Kateman and Bente village in Pelagiran district, Indragiri Hilir," Rahidi said on Thursday.
Other hot spots are shown in plantation owned by Malaysian companies, such as PT Tunggal Mitra Plantation, PT Udaya Loh Dinawi, PT Abdi Plantation, PT Jati Jaya Perkasa, PT Multi Gambut Industry, PT Bumi Reksa Nusa Sejati, and PT Mustika Agro Lestari. Fires also occured in area of industrial timber plantations owned by PT Riau Andalan Pulp and Paper (RAPP).
Government of Singapore has expressed concern related to forest fires in Sumatra Island. Minister of Foreign Affairs, Marty Natalegawa said Singapore Foreign Minister, K Shanmugam had been communicating with Indonesian government to take appropriate measures and anticipation.
"Singapore is already fully aware of Indonesian steps to address the problem of forest fires. This is not the first time that happened in our country. Thus, all parties need to avoid the impression that Indonesia does not take concrete steps, or acts of omission, which in the end causes problems in Southeast Asia," Natalegawa said.
Both government, Indonesia and Singapore, will conduct a meeting to discuss this problem. Government of Singapore through Ministry of Environment and Water Resources offers assistance to Indonesia to address the problem of forest fires which causing smog in the country.