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Illegal Logging

Volume 407: debated on Wednesday 18 June 2003

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To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs when the EU action plan to address the trade in illegal logging will be discussed by the Council of Ministers; and if she will make a statement. [119397]

The Communication from the Commission on Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade was raised by the UK and Denmark at Environment Council on 13 June 2003. The UK urged the Presidency to facilitate a full discussion in Council at an early time.

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what the next steps in the (a) development and (b) implementation of the EU action plan to address the trade in illegal logging are; and if she will make a statement. [119398]

The Communication from the Commission on Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade was published on 21 May. The Commission request endorsement from Council and the European Parliament to:

  • (a) Enter into negotiations for FLEGT Partnership agreements with wood producing countries;
  • (b) Present a Regulation setting up the voluntary licensing scheme, in conjunction with wide stakeholder consultation; and
  • (c) Review options for, and consider the impact of, further measures to support the Action Plan, including, in the absence of multilateral progress, the feasibility of legislation to control imports of illegally harvested timber, and report back to the Council on this work during 2004.
  • (d) Member states are also asked to identify relevant national legislation which could be applied to address the illegal logging issue, and to inform the Commission of their findings.
  • The UK Government are seeking an early discussion in Council in order to allow the Commission to take the process forward.

    To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if the UK Government will ensure that the EU action plan on illegal logging will include the introduction of legislation to ban the import of illegal timber into EU member states; and if she will make a statement. [119399]

    The Communication from the Commission on Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade was published on 21 May. The Commission request endorsement from Council and the European Parliament to:

  • (a) Enter into negotiations for FLEGT Partnership Agreements with wood producing countries;
  • (b) Present a Regulation setting up the voluntary licensing scheme, in conjunction with wide stakeholder consultation; and
  • (c) Review options for, and consider the impact of, further measures to support the Action Plan, including, in the absence of multilateral progress, the feasibility of legislation to control imports of illegally harvested timber, and report back to the Council on this work during 2004;
  • (d) Member states are also asked to identify relevant national legislation which could be applied to address the illegal logging issue, and to inform the Commission of their findings.
  • The UK Government are supportive of the proposed Action Plan, including the licensing scheme to prevent the importation of illegally harvested timber into the EU from participating countries and the review of options for further legislation to control imports of illegally harvested timber.

    To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs whether it is the Government's policy to support the development of EU legislation to ban the import of illegal timber into Europe; and if she will make a statement. [119400]

    The Communication from the Commission on Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade was published on 21 May. The Commission request endorsement from Council and the European Parliament to:

  • (a) Enter into negotiations for FLEGT Partnership agreements with wood producing countries;
  • (b) Present a Regulation setting up the voluntary licensing scheme, in conjunction with wide stakeholder consultation; and
  • (c) Review options for, and consider the impact of, further measures to support the Action Plan, including, in the absence of multilateral progress, the feasibility of legislation to control imports of illegally harvested timber, and report back to the Council on this work during 2004.
  • (d) Member states are also asked to identify relevant national legislation which could be applied to address the illegal logging issue, and to inform the Commission of their findings.
  • The Government supports the Commission's proposal to review the options for legislation to control imports of illegally harvested timber, will help with related analysis and, together with other member states, will consider carefully the Commission's report.