Green Blues

Lawmakers are starting to take the mushrooming finance and investment companies seriously.
A high-powered committee looking at financial sector reforms is now trying to widen the regulatory net to cover all companies collecting public funds.

While most of these operate beyond the scope of regulators some are using loopholes in the law the to avoid regulation all together.

At Touchwoods plantation, in addition to a gardeners care, professional botanists and forestry experts also monitor growth of the mahogany saplings regularly to try to make sure they reach their full potential.

All this fuss is because these saplings, barely two feet tall, carry a stiff price tag of about Rs. 5,500 each.

But 17 years from now Touchwood Management Company that runs the plantation, estimate that this same tree would be worth Rs. 22,000.

“A client investing in ten trees for example will receive Rs. 2.5mn in 17’bd years. Each tree we will purchase back for Rs. 250, 000 less 12% which is the annual maintenance fee we charge, “Roscoe Malony, Chairman, Touchwood explains.

Touchwood officials say mahogany prices have gone up at an annual 13% over the last 30 years locally. Internationally timber prices have gone up at an annual 3%.