The EU Timber Regulation complements the EU's policy on illegal logging and trade. Illegal logging and related trade may contribute to deforestation and undermines legitimate business operations. This illegal activity may also degrade biodiversity and ecosystem services. In addition, it impacts the livelihoods of forest-dependent communities and indigenous peoples.
The timber Regulation includes all timber and wood products, including paper and pulp, but not recyclables. Norway has implemented systems for tracking timber harvests and production and the forestry sector is further developing its due dilligence systems in order to meet the requirements of the regulation when it comes into force on the 3rd of March 2013. Over 90 % of productive forests are PEFC sertified and it is expected that this will further the ability of the forestry sector to provide evidence for the legality of its timber as it is placed on the market.
Norway intends to implement the EU Timber Regulation in 2013. Norway published its consultation on draft national legislation regarding the placing on the market of timber and wood products in Norway, on the 21st of November 2012 (deadline 16th of January 2013).
The Norwegian Ministry of the Environment and the Norwegian Ministry of Agriculture and Food work together on the implementation of the regulation in Norway. It is proposed that the responsibilities of Competent Authorities will be divided between two organisations: the Norwegian Agricultural Authority will have responsibility for following up the regulation regarding timber and timber products originating in Norway, whilst the Climate and Pollution Agency will ensure the implementation of regulation as regards imported timber products that are placed on the market in Norway. Trade- and environmental organizations are being consulted in the development of national regulations and have been in dialogue with the Ministries.
More information on competent authorities will be available as soon as the decision is made. Information on monitoring organisations operating in Norway will also be made available here.
The EU Commission has launched a dedicated website on the EU Timber regulation
The guidance document on the EU Timber regulation is available here
Photo: Lajla T. White