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Ehancing Knowledge and Building Capacity on Forest-Related Legislation and Timber Legality - GCP/GLO/938/JPN









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    Document
    TimberLex, the FAO online portal on forest-related legislation and timber legality
    XV World Forestry Congress, 2-6 May 2022
    2022
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    Illegal logging seriously undermines efforts to improve sustainable forest management, including efforts to avoid deforestation and forest degradation. As more timber producing and consuming countries enact requirements related to legal production and trade of timber, facilitating greater and easier access to legal information on timber would greatly contribute to demonstrating legality, thus reducing the incidence of illegal logging and contributing to the achievement of sustainable forest management.
    In this context, the new FAO TimberLex database has been established as an open online resource to provide access to accurate, up-to-date and user-friendly legal information on forest management, timber production and trade from more than 50 timber-trading countries across regions. Country profiles are structured around a common format consisting of a set of Guiding Legal Elements for timber legality encompassing the different stages of the timber value chain considered as critical to the legality of timber. The database aims to serve more than one audience: (i) government officers (legislators, policymakers, forestry departments and law enforcement officers) which are mandated to play a role along the timber value chain; (ii) private sector producers and traders in timber producing and consuming countries; (iii) civil society and non-governmental organizations who will benefit from enhanced knowledge and capacity around timber-related legislation.
    TimberLex ensures increased access to and understanding of national legal frameworks governing forestry and timber supply chains enabling more effective law enforcement from a plurality of actors nationally and internationally. This will facilitate national and international trade in legal timber contributing to curb deforestation and forest degradation. Keywords: Illegal trade, Policies, Governance, Deforestation and forest degradation ID: 3486224
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    Book (series)
    Why Law Matters: Design Principles for Strengthening the Role of Forestry Legislation in Reducing Illegal Activities and Corrupt Practices 2002
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    The damage caused by illegal activities and corrupt practices in the world’s forests is a problem of enormous proportions. In many parts of the world, forest exploitation is dominated by rampant illegal harvesting, large-scale violation of trade regulations both domestically and internationally, fraudulent practices abetted or condoned by government officials and other destructive activities in violation of applicable laws. This paper is concerned with one facet of this complex problem–h ow important is legislation in the fight against destructive and corrupt forestry practices? In this short paper, we explore ways in which the drafting of forestry legislation – both in terms of the substantive content of law and the process by which it is written – can facilitate or obstruct efforts toreduce illegal activities. We propose several legislative design principles that have special relevance to the problems of corruption and law enforcement in the forestry sector.
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    Project
    Contributing to Sustainable Forest Management and Poverty Reduction by Tackling Illegal Logging and Promoting Trade in Legal Timber Products - GCP/GLO/397/EC and GCP/GLO/600/MUL 2023
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    Poor forest governance, unclear legal frameworks, weak law enforcement and demand for cheap timber and timber products all contribute to illegal practices in the forest sector. These practices jeopardize efforts to improve sustainable forest management (SFM) and have a significant impact on a country's ability to achieve broader sustainable development goals such as poverty alleviation, food security and climate change mitigation. As part of an effort to tackle illegal logging and associated trade, the European Union’s Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade (FLEGT) Action Plan was established in 2003 to help tropical timber producing countries establish and implement measures to promote trade in legal timber products. Under this framework, tropical timber producing countries and the European Union enter into Voluntary Partnership Agreements (VPAs), bilateral trade agreements which commit to exporting only legal timber into European markets. In this context, the FAO EU FLEGT Programme provided technical support and resources for the negotiation and implementation of VPAs, while in countries not engaged in a formal VPA process, the Programme supported measures to improve law enforcement, timber legality assurance and overall forest sector governance.

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