One-fifth of EU timber imports are illegal

Almost one-fifth of wood imported into the European Union in 2006 came from illegal sources, with the UK being the second largest importer, a new investigation has found.

The UK imported 3.5 million cubic metres of illegal wood, which included importing the biggest quantities of furniture, finished wood products, sawnwood and plywood of all EU states. says a report from WWF. Only Finland brought in more illegal timber.

In 2006, the EU imported between 26.5 and 31 million cubic metres of illegal wood and related products, equal to the total amount of wood
harvested in Poland in the same year. Most of Europe’s illegal timber comes from Russia, Indonesia and China.

WWF presents these findings as further evidence of the need for a strong European law to prevent illegal wood entering EU markets.

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