EU Timber Regulation (EUTR)

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EU Timber Regulation (EUTR)[แก้ไข]

What is the EUTR?[แก้ไข]

EUTR stands for: EU Timber Regulation; The EU Timber Regulation aims to reduce illegal logging by ensuring that no illegal timber or timber products can be sold in the EU. It was created as part of the EU’s FLEGT Action Plan. The EU Timber Regulation came into force on 3 March 2013. It prohibits operators in Europe from placing illegally harvested timber and products derived from illegal timber on the EU market. ‘Legal’ timber is defined as timber produced in compliance with the laws of the country where it is harvested. The regulation applies to timber and a wide range of timber products, including pulp and paper. It sets out three main requirements for operators in Europe that place timber or timber products on the EU market for the first time.

The EU Timber Regulation and VPAs[แก้ไข]

The EU Timber Regulation and VPAs are part of the EU’s FLEGT Action Plan. They work together to combat illegal logging and improve forest governance.

VPAs are treaties that the EU makes with timber-producing countries that export timber and timber products to the EU. A country that has a VPA and an operational licensing system can issue FLEGT licences for legally produced timber and timber products.

All timber and timber products with a FLEGT licence automatically comply with the EU Timber Regulation. This means that when purchasing FLEGT-licensed timber, EU operators do not need to carry out additional due diligence checks.

Several countries have negotiated a VPA with the EU, but none of them has begun issuing FLEGT licences. Until FLEGT licences are available, operators will require evidence of compliance with national legislation. The definition of ‘legal timber’ set out in each VPA is a useful reference for checking timber legality.

How will it be monitored?[แก้ไข]

Each European country must designate a competent authority which is responsible for implementing the EU Timber Regulation and sets penalties for non-compliance. Once a VPA partner country has an operational licensing system, the competent authorities will verify at any customs point that each shipment from that country is covered by a valid FLEGT licence, before releasing the shipment for free circulation in the EU.

Prohibiting illegally harvested timber[แก้ไข]

The EU Timber Regulation prohibits operators in Europe from placing illegally harvested timber and products derived from illegal timber on the EU market. Legal timber is defined as timber that is in compliance with the laws of the country where it is harvested

Exercising due diligence System[แก้ไข]

The regulation requires operators who are placing timber on the EU market for the first time (whether imported or harvested within the EU) to exercise ‘due diligence’. This means they must have access to information on the source of the timber (including tree species, origin of the wood and compliance with national laws and regulations) and take steps to assess and minimise the risk of placing illegal timber on EU markets

Keeping records[แก้ไข]

After timber has been placed on the market for the first time, ‘traders’ (those who buy and sell timber or timber products already on the market) have to keep records of whom they bought timber from and to whom they sold the timber.

Providing assistance[แก้ไข]

Operators can create their own due diligence system or use one developed by a monitoring organisation. This is a company or organisation which is authorised by the European Commission to provide guidance to operators.