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The EU Timber Regulation (EUTR) was signed in 2010 and entered into force in March 2013. It is one component of the EU Forest, Law, Enforcement, Governance and Trade (FLEGT) Action Plan, and it is the responsibility of each of the 28 Member States to implement and enforce it.
The EUTR makes it illegal to place timber on the EU market that has been logged in violation of the laws in the country of origin. It engages economic operators throughout the supply chain, and obliges those operators who first place timber on the EU market to take active steps to assess and mitigate the risk that the timber they sell has been logged illegally.
It applies to specific timber and timber products placed on the EU market – whether logged in the EU or internationally, and applies even when timber products arrive in the EU via a processing country. Effectively enforced, the EUTR can positively address the problem of illegal logging.
The EUTR includes two key components that must be considered by those who first place timber on the EU market (the ‘operator’):
1. Prohibition: operators are prohibited from placing illegally logged timber or timbrer products on the EU market.
2. Due diligence: operators must actively assess the risk that timber has been logged illegally. Components of a Due Diligence System (DDS) include: (i) gathering information (ii) evaluating the information to assess the risk that timber has been logged illegally (iii) mitigating the risk. If the risk is found to be non-negligible, timber cannot be sold on the EU market.
The complete text of the EU Timber Regulation (Regulation EU No 995/2010), implementing regulations, and guidance document can be found in our Law Database, in addition to copies of individual EU Member State implementing legislation for the EUTR.