Regulation (EU) No 995/2010 of the European Parliament and of the Council of 20 October 2010 laying down the obligations of operators who place timber and timber products on the market – also known as the (Illegal) Timber Regulation counters the trade in illegally harvested timber and timber products through three key obligations:
Once on the market, the timber and timber products may be sold on and/or transformed before they reach the final consumer. To facilitate the traceability of timber products economic operators in this part of the supply chain (referred to as traders in the regulation) have an obligation to
The Regulation covers a wide range of timber products listed in its Annex using EU Customs code nomenclature.
The Regulation entered into application on 3 March 2013.
The core of the 'due diligence' notion is that operators undertake a risk management exercise so as to minimise the risk of placing illegally harvested timber, or timber products containing illegally harvested timber, on the EU market.
The three key elements of the "due diligence system" are:
The Regulation covers a broad range of timber products including solid wood products, flooring, plywood, pulp and paper. Not included are recycled products, as well as printed papers such as books, magazines and newspapers. The product scope can be amended if necessary.
The Regulation applies to both imported and domestically produced timber and timber products.
The Regulation is legally binding on all 28 EU Member States, which are responsible for laying down effective, proportionate and dissuasive penalties and for enforcing the Regulation.
The Regulation provides for "Monitoring organisations" to be recognised by the European Commission. These organisations which are private entities, provide EU operators with operational due diligence systems. Operators can thus develop their own system or use one developed by a monitoring organisation.
Applicants for Monitoring Organisations must send their applications via e-mail to the following e-mail addresses:
A hard copy may be sent to the following address:
European Commission; Directorate-General for Environment
Avenue de Beaulieu 5, 1160 Auderghem, Brussel, Belgique
The Commission charges no fees for recognition of Monitoring Organisations.
Applicants may send applications in all EU official languages; however a copy translated into English will facilitate and speed up the assessment process. Applicants must clearly state in a cover letter in which EU Member States intend to provide services. A table with basic minimum description of a due diligence system may be found here, while the assessment tables can be found here.
The Commission adopted Commission delegated Regulation of 23.2.2012 on the procedural rules for the recognition and withdrawal of recognition of monitoring organisations as provided for in Regulation (EU) No 995/2010 of the European Parliament and of the Council laying down the obligations of operators who place timber and timber products on the market.
The Commission adopted an implementing regulation on the risk assessment and risk mitigation measures which are part of the "due diligence system" as well as on the frequency and nature of checks which Member States` competent authorities will conduct on the monitoring organizations to ensure they comply with the requirements of the Regulation. The purpose of this regulation is to ensure the uniform implementation of the EU Timber Regulation.
EU Timber Regulation Review 2015: First two years show progress, but more effort needed from Member States and private sector
Following its entry into application on 3 March 2013, the Commission completed in 2015 a review of the effectiveness of the EU Timber Regulation (EUTR) during its first two years of implementation on the basis of Member States' reports and inputs received through the public consultation and direct contacts with a broad range of stakeholders, including private sector and civil society. The results of the consultation are publicly available.
The updated version of the Guidance Document for the EU Timber Regulation was adopted on 12 February 2016. It is published in 23 languages of the EU.
Two stakeholder meetings were held on 21 March and 28 April 2011 to discuss different options and best practices for the recognition of "monitoring organisations" entrusted with certain responsibilities in the framework of EU Timber Regulation (EUTR) legislation as well as to exchange views on best options for risk assessment and risk mitigation procedures. Stakeholders` opinions were reflected in the final report of the Commission funded study for developing of the non-legislative acts provided for in the EUTR (published below).A stakeholders` conference took place on 9 November 2012 in Brussels where a Draft Guidance document on certain aspect of the EU Timber Regulation was presented and discussed. The conference was webstreamed and could be watched live on the following link.