Tropical timber certified under the Malaysian Timber Certification Scheme (MTCS) is now accepted as certified sustainable in the Netherlands, following a parliamentary debate on January 18, under the Dutch Public Procurement Policy for Sustainable Timber.
Dutch Minister for the Environment, Sharon Dijksma, had earlier made the decision to fully accept the MTCS through a letter to the Dutch Parliament dated 22 December 2016, following approval of senior government officials and members of the Timber Procurement Assessment Committee (TPAC) when they visited Malaysia in November 2016.
The decision is an important milestone for the MTCS and a significant endorsement of Malaysia’s commitment and ongoing efforts in promoting sustainable forestry and timber industry through certification.
The Dutch market is the largest importer of certified timber products from Malaysia, accounting for about 30 percent of the total export of MTCS-certified timber products. Additionally MTCS-certified timber products account for half of the total certified tropical timber shipped to the Dutch market.
The acceptance of the MTCS will contribute towards The Netherlands’ ambition of procuring at least 90 percent of its tropical timber imports from sustainable sources by 2020.
With this acceptance, the Netherlands becomes the latest country to fully recognise the MTCS—which is endorsed by the Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification (PEFC)—in its public procurement policy along with other countries such as United Kingdom, Germany, France, Denmark, Belgium, Finland, Switzerland and Japan.