A new FLEGT update compares two systems for verifying legal timber

The EU FLEGT Facility has published a briefing that compares two regulatory approaches that aim to prevent trade in illegally-harvested timber and timber products: Japan’s Clean Wood Act and the EU Timber Regulation (EUTR).

The EUTR is a mandatory piece of legislation and EU Member States lay down the penalties applicable to EUTR infringements. In the Japanese Clean Wood Act, operators voluntarily register as a way of being recognised by the Government of Japan for taking steps to verify the legality of timber and timber products.

The regimes also differ in their scope, definitions, due diligence approaches, measures for verifying compliance, penalties and support to implementation — as illustrated in the briefing’s annex.

The briefing suggests ways Japan could further develop the Clean Wood Act, and calls for closer cooperation between Japan and international markets.