National Government Interventions in a Global Arena
Edited by Frank Wijen, Kees Zoeteman, Jan Pieters and Paul van Seters
Saskia Ozinga and Hannah Mowat SUMMARY A large proportion of tropical timber is logged illegally. In this chapter, we discuss different options available to tackle this major environmental problem, exacerbated by globalisation. Relatively successful instruments include the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) Convention on Bribery, legislation against money laundering, selfregulation of the financial sector, the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species, and forest certification. However, these instruments face considerable implementation problems, being either limited in effectiveness or cumbersome to apply. In both the United States (US) and the European Union (EU), two of the biggest timber importers, new legislation tailored to tackle illegal logging has been developed. The concerted efforts of non-governmental organisations (NGOs), which informed and lobbied their governments to use trade incentives, have been instrumental in the development of these laws. The US Lacey Act, a conservation law revised in 2008 to include illegal timber, requires businesses to demonstrate that their purchasing policies and mechanisms effectively avoid sourcing timber from illegal sources and demonstrate due diligence. Across the waters, with the understanding that addressing illegal logging demands cooperation between importing and exporting countries, the EU has been working since 2002 on a comprehensive plan to control illegal timber imports: the EU Action Plan for Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade (FLEGT). This Action Plan has led to new legislation to control illegal timber imports and support timber-producing countries to improve forest governance. Although it is early to assess them, both initiatives seem to have a...
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