Charts 1 to 6 below provide a statistical summary of EU tropical timber imports between January 2015 and May 2019 according to the status of FLEGT VPAs between tropical partner countries and the EU at the end of that period.
IMM H1/2019 Summary Newsletter
The EU imported 423,000 metric tonnes (MT) of wood products from Indonesia in the year ending May 2019, a 1% reduction compared to 428,000 MT in the year ending May 2018. However, in value terms EU imports from Indonesia increased 9% from €782 million to €855 million in the same period. As the Euro weakened against the US currency during this period, the increase in dollar value was less significant, up 5% from US$932 million to US$976 million.
After a dip in 2017 and the early months of 2018, EU imports of tropical wood products recovered ground in the second half of 2018 and gained momentum in the first five months of 2019. EU imports from Indonesia have increased in value terms but remain stubbornly flat in tonnage terms. There was significant recovery in EU imports of sawnwood from Cameroon in the year to May 2019. Most other gains during this period were in imports from countries not engaged in the VPA process, including Brazil, China, India, Panama, and Cuba.
The International Tropical Timber Organisation (ITTO), the China Timber & Wood Products Distribution Association (CTWPDA), together with the Centre for International Forest Products Trade, National Forestry and Grassland Administration (CINFT NFGA), and the International Tropical Timber Technical Association (ATIBT) will jointly organize a one-week international forum “Together towards Global Green Supply Chains - a Forest Products Industry Initiative”. The event takes place from 22-25 October in Shanghai and Huzhou and aims to promote the advancement of legal and sustainable supply chains and related benefits such as poverty alleviation, creation of employment, economic growth, income generation and contributions to climate change mitigation.
The attitudes of architects and specifiers on FLEGT Licensing will be the focus of the next EU FLEGT IMM market study. The rationale is that architects are widely regarded as key gatekeepers to the construction sector. They directly specify materials for buildings and can strongly influence client choice and overall design trends. In particular, the profession, as clearly reflected in architectural media, has a strong buy-in on environmental issues and is leading and shaping trends in low-carbon, sustainable construction.
The next IMM Trade Consultation takes place in Barcelona on October 7. It will give participants from Spain and across the EU the opportunity to hear and discuss the latest on the FLEGT VPA initiative and tropical timber trade flows, notably from VPA partner countries. Given the interest of the Spanish timber sector, there will be a particular focus on VPA developments in Africa. The event is supported by the Spanish Timber Trade Federation (AEIM) and the EFI FLEGT Facility and will be held at the latter’s headquarters on the historic Sant Pau Art Nouveau site.