Obligations of operators who place timber and timber products on the market

In October 2008 the Commission proposed a regulation laying down the obligations of operators who place timber (wood) and timber products on the market with the aim to support the international fight against illegal logging and its related trade. The objective of this regulation is to minimise the risk of illegal timber being sold on the EU market. As a major consumer of timber and timber products, the EU has an obligation to take effective action against deforestation and illegal logging.
The regulation requests to operators who place timber and timber products on the market for the first time to exercise a full due diligence (to provide information - principles of the chain of custody - to comply with risk assessment procedures and to participate in risk migration procedures) and to operators who make timber and timber products available on the market to exercise a due care system (basic information) .
European publishers have for many years been paying close attention to issues of sustainability and environmental responsibility, notably regarding the choice of paper that is used for the printing of their various publications. However, publishers should not be held responsible for due diligence along the supply chain, as they are not directly involved in the sourcing process and therefore don’t have direct access to the necessary information.
In March 2013 the requirements of the EU Timber Regulation will come into force.

  • FEP joined forces with the newspaper and magazine industry representatives to advocate for the exclusion of the publishing sector from the scope of the regulation.
  • FEP is closely monitoring any further debate issued by the European Commission on illegal logging as the EC will have to prepare an Impact Assessment study on the issue.
  • FEP attends the meetings of the Advisory Committee on Forestry and Forest-based industries
  • FEP upheld the necessity to avoid burdening publishers with a responsibility they are not in the capacity to sustain. This file is an excellent example of the importance of a trade organisation in raising awareness and mobilising support on behalf of its individual members