Combating illegal timber trade: Promoting sustainable development and good governance

WTO Public Forum, Geneva, Thursday, 4 October 2018, 10:00-11:30, Room B

The EU FLEGT Action Plan promotes trade in legal timber products and requires that timber being traded in the EU is legal. Other markets (USA, Australia, Japan) have adopted similar policies. These policies have repercussions for timber producing and exporting countries, which often need to upgrade their control and information systems to meet the new market demands. This session will show how trade policies can promote and support governance reforms in developing countries so that forest resources contribute to sustainable development, and that the benefits that come from forests are shared fairly within countries and communities. The session will discuss lessons the FLEGT approach — which combines trade with strong country ownership, multistakeholder participation, capacity building and technology — has for other sectors.


Moderator: Jussi Viitanen, Head of the EU FLEGT and REDD facilities, European Forest Institute


  • Hannah Mowat, Campaigns Coordinator, Fern
  • Harrison S. Karnwea, Sr., Chairman, Board of Directors, Forestry Development Authority, Liberia
  • David Hopkins, Managing Director, Timber Trade Federation, United Kingdom
  • Herbert Christ, Head, International Forest Policy Program, German Agency for International Development