The Danish Competent Authority last week required seven companies to make improvements to their due diligence systems if they are to sell teak imported from Myanmar on the EU market. The case raises questions about whether it is currently possible to place timber from Myanmar on the EU market while meeting the obligations of the EU Timber Regulation.
Swedish Administrative Courts today confirmed a ruling that a certificate issued by the Myanmar Forest Products Merchants’ Federation (MFPMF) did not provide adequate proof that a shipment of teak imported into Sweden had been legally harvested.
As of today, November 15, Indonesia becomes the first country to issue licences under the EU Forest Law Enforcement Governance and Trade (FLEGT) initiative. These will exempt timber and wood products from further due diligence under the EU Timber Regulation (EUTR) and European operator importers are expecting to receive their first licensed cargoes before the end of the year.
The Environmental Investigation Agency has published a briefing on how teak exports from Myanmar/Burma to the European Union are in breach of the EU Timber Regulation. The briefing details the results of an EIA investigation into Burmese teak entering the EU market.
Earlier this month, ITTO reported that Indonesia is due to issue the first FLEGT licences in November and observed that the Indonesian government and industry are looking to these licences to deliver significant market advantages (ITTO TTM Report 1–15 September 2016).