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www.rec.org Law Enforcement and Compliance: Illegal logging Aniko M. Nemeth, REC April 2009
www.rec.org Forest assets 1.Economic: wood/non-wood production; employment 2.Social: social and cultural functions 3.Environmental: biodiversity conservation, nutrient cycling, protection of microclimate + Global values: carbon storage, tourism and future genetic resource use
www.rec.org Introduction Definition of illegal logging Timber harvested, transported, processed and/or traded in contravention of the national laws of the country of harvest and certain international treaties such as the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES).
www.rec.org Introduction Illegal logging may take place in a variety of ways Extracting timber products without permission, including from reserves and protected areas Gaining access to forests through corrupt dealings Cutting protected species Cutting more than the legally agreed limit.
www.rec.org Introduction: Causes of illegal logging Underlying causes are usually complex, and often lie outside the forestry sector Poverty Commercial exploitation of timber Corruption and general failure of governance Unclear, controversial or non-existent policies and legislation governing the use of forest resources Weak institutional structures Inability to monitor and enforce the regulations Interest groups benefiting from a status quo and actively resisting change
www.rec.org Consequences of illegal logging Environmental implications: loss of biodiversity, deforestation/forest degradation, desertification, climate change Economic and social consequences: revenue loss for the government, corruption, undermining the rule of law and good governance, contributing to organised crime, weakening the fabric of society Cross-border impacts: tensions, hindering regional sustainable development
www.rec.org Consequences of illegal logging Undermining many essential elements of the European development objectives: - public sector financing - targeted development objectives (addressing poverty, peace, security, good governance) - the fight against corruption - sustainable development
www.rec.org Actions: International response The World Bank: Forest Law Enforcement and Governance (FLEG) 2001 First Ministerial FLEG Conference for East Asia 2002 Forest Strategy: Commitment to take action to curb illegal logging and other forest crimes Regional ministerial FLEG initiatives: 1.2001- East Asia and the Pacific 2.2003 - Africa 3.2005 - Europe and North Asia. 4.Latin America and the Caribbean: activities for a potential FLEG initiative are under way
www.rec.org Actions: The European response The EU Action Plan for Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade (FLEGT) Measures: Support to timber–producing countries Activities to promote trade in legal timber (VPA) Promoting public procurement policies Support for private sector initiatives Safeguards for financing and investment Use of existing legislative instruments or adoption of new legislation to support the plan Addressing the problem of conflict timber
www.rec.org FLEGT Measures to combat illegal logging and associated trade by influencing both demand and supply. Partnership agreements with producer countries that support: - governance reforms - measures regulating and controlling timber trade - measures to verify the legality of products Measures to increase demand for legally sourced timber: - public procurement policies - private sector initiatives - financing and investment, e.g. lending criteria - awareness raising
www.rec.org FLEGT partnerships Binding agreements between the EU and partner countries: together stop illegal logging and improve forest management Strengthen producer countries’ efforts to improve governance (capacity building, improved control and monitoring, transparency) Introduce export licences to the EU based on legality verification. Legality = compliance with appropriate laws of partner country Secure and improve EU market access
www.rec.org The key elements of Voluntary Partnership Agreements (VPAs) Commitment to develop legal and administrative structures/systems to verify produced timber Legislative/regulatory reforms where relevant Monitoring Legality assurance system Social safeguards: mitigate negative impacts on poor Stakeholder involvement (capacity building for government/NGOs/private sector) Transparency measures Trade promotion Consultation and communications
www.rec.org Illegal logging: REC project Fact-finding report on the magnitude, severity, practices and consequences of illegal logging in selected countries Diagnostic audits to evaluate capacities to address the issue of illegal logging according to international standards Action plan/concrete recommendations directed at specific institutions and relevant actors Conferences and events to bring attention to the problem of illegal logging http://illegallogging.rec.org/home.html
www.rec.org Thank you for your attention. Aniko Mudra-Nemeth AMudra@rec.org
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