Feb 15, 2013

Vietnam - Wood firms still unaware of EU import requirement

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VietNamNet Bridge – From March 3, wood makers will have to explain the origins of their products in order to export to the European Union (EU) market, but many enterprises are still not aware of this requirement.

Regulation 995/2010 of the EU will officially come into force on March 3, 2013 in all 27 EU nations, according to the Vietnam Administration of Forestry under the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development.

However, many wood firms remain unacquainted with the procedures for declaring the origins of their products and proving them legal, said Huynh Van Hanh, vice chairman of the Handicraft and Wood Industry Association of HCMC (Hawa).

Therefore, since early this year, a lot of forest product associations and wood processors and exporters have sent their petitions to the Vietnam Administration of Forestry, asking for information about Regulation 995/2010 and the license of Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade (FLEGT).

“Several workshops have been held by the agriculture ministry, associations and foreign organizations with an aim to inform enterprises about this regulation of the EU, which will take effect in 2013, but as of late last year, many enterprises had still not known what to do when exporting goods to the EU,” said Hanh.

Vietnam and the EU are in talks over FLEGT Voluntary Partnership Agreement (VPA) in order to build a system for timber legality and issue FLEGT licenses to timber and timber products exported from Vietnam to the EU. As the negotiations were not concluded in December 2012 as expected, timber and timber product exporters will still have to comply with Regulation 995/2010.

The EU Regulation 995/2010 applies to timber and timber products imported into the EU nations, including hardwood, wood flooring, plywood, pulp and paper.

Recycled products like bamboo and cork and printed books, magazines and newspapers are not covered by the regulation. Timber and timber products with FLEGT or CITES licenses are considered meeting this regulation.

Source: SGT

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