EC Consultation Results: EUTR ‘inadequate’ as support for expanding product scope grows

eutr product scope results

RESULTS FROM THE PUBLIC CONSULTATION ON THE PRODUCT SCOPE OF THE EU TIMBER REGULATION

221 individuals and organisations responded to the European Commission’s public consultation on the product scope of the EU Timber Regulation (EUTR).

Coming from a range of public and private sectors, they identified as:

63 – Trade and Industry Associations

49 – Civil Society Organisations

30 – Operators

22 – Competent Authority or Public Authority

21 – Traders

23 – Other businesses and organisations

The survey shows those responding as broadly in favour of expanding the scope of the EUTR to products currently excluded, particularly all printed material and ending the disparity between chairs and other wooden furniture.

Overwhelmingly, responders do not think the EUTR in its current scope is adequate for meeting the aims of the EUTR – namely, fighting illegal logging and the related trade.

Asked why they believed the product scope needed to be changed comments focused on the need to end loopholes and create an even playing field. The EUTR should aim for the ‘simplest and easy to understand system’. EU based printers said they were being undercut by paper produced elsewhere, they wanted a level playing field for domestic producers and companies importing from 3rd countries. And last but not least, the limits to the product scope is preventing the EUTR from reaching its core objective of countering illegal timber. If any timber product is reaching the EU market despite being made from illegally logged timber, due to it not being covered by the EUTR, then this clear loophole must be closed.

Others also emphasized the need to implement other reforms along with the product scope expansion. Suggestions included support for trans-border action with confiscation ability, harmonisation of enforcement procedures across member states and better education of authorities.

The full results can be downloaded here.

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