Indonesia bans exports of illegally harvested timber
Stepping up its fight against illegal logging, the government began the implementation early this month of a ban on exports of illegally harvested wood and wood products.
The government made it mandatory for forestry companies to obtain official certificates to show that timber has been legally sourced without damaging forests. The policy has been deemed necessary since according to official statistics illegal logging activities have been destroying more than 1 million hectares of forests each year.
The new requirement was issued after the European Parliament voted in favor of a ban on the sale of illegally harvested timber and timber products in the European market.
The EU regulation on importation of illegal timber, previously known as “due diligence” is expected to be fully in place by 2013.
The Countries that sign the EU-based Voluntary Partnership Agreement (VPA) would be considered in compliance with EU timber regulations, Hadi said.
“We have long demanded that once we sign the VPA, timber from Indonesia will be subject to due diligence,” he said.
The agreement is an EU licensing scheme to ensure all timber products entering EU member countries have been produced legally.