The German contribution

Combating illegal logging

Logs from the rain forest at the wayside in Ecuador

According to World Bank estimates, every year between 10 and 15 billion US dollars of private and state income are lost as a result of illegal logging. Illegal logging is closely linked to corruption.

In response to these problems, the EU launched its Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade (FLEGT) Action Plan. This includes measures on both the supply and demand sides to push back illegal logging and promote trade in legally produced timber products. Bilateral FLEGT measures have become an integral component of German development cooperation in the forestry sector.

On the supply side, voluntary partnership agreements between the European Union and the main timber supplier countries will ensure that only legally produced timber products are imported into the EU. Germany is supporting the EU’s negotiation process with Cameroon, Côte d‘Ivoire, Honduras, Laos and Viet Nam, and at the regional level in the Congo Basin with the Commission of Central African Forests (COMIFAC) and with the Secretariat of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN).

On the demand side the European Union has issued a Timber Regulation. Since 2013 this regulation has prohibited the marketing of illegally logged timer, and obliged all market participants within the EU to comply with specific due diligence obligations and standards. These include obligations to provide information on the nature and provenance of timber.

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