Penalties promised for illegal wood sales
"[We] congratulate Mr Burke for this policy, which sees Australia take a leading role in the protection of the world's most threatened forests"
Australia - AGRICULTURE Minister Tony Burke yesterday promised that the government would make it a criminal offence to sell illegally logged timber.
Greenpeace claimed Australia imported $840 million in illegal timber products annually, including from PNG and Indonesia.
The Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry said about $400m worth of "suspected illegally sourced timber and timber products" were imported annually.
The Australian Conservation Foundation, World Vision, the Uniting Church, Friends of the Earth and the Humane Society International issued a joint statement backing the move.
Lee Tan of ACF said: "This trade fuels corruption, environmental destruction and social disharmony in our closest neighbours."