News archive 2014


UK ups EU Timber Regulation enforcement

A year after the EU Timber Regulation came into force, the Government of the United Kingdom is ready to increase its efforts to enforce the regulations and investigate cases of non-compliance. The National Measurement Office (NMO) confirmed that the UK's initial phase of building a dedicated team and taking an educational approach is now completed, and the UK is ready to follow up with more stringent enforcement.

Michael Kearney from the NMO spoke at a conference hosted by the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs in London on 27 March, alongside speakers from the private sector and NGOs, and acknowledged the need to see the EU Timber Regulation prove its worth. In contrast, Anand Punja from the UK Timber Trade Federation said it is already having an effect on the UK market. Imports of tropical timber from countries perceived as high risk have decreased. The timber and timber products industry is adapting yet facing challenges to understand what is required to ensure compliance.

Jago Wadley from the Environmental Investigation Agency raised concerns about the challenges ahead for effective enforcement of the EU Timber Regulation, including uneven progress in EU countries. The competent authorities differ in their interpretation and implementation of the regulation. Wadley also said he hoped to see a tougher interpretation in its enforcement.