European Union Timber Regulation

The EU published the Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade (FLEGT) Action Plan in 2003. The aim of this Action Plan is to reduce illegal logging and strengthen forest governance. The EU Timber Regulation (EUTR) was created as a part of the EU’s FLEGT.

The EUTR came into effect, in March 2013, with the aim of preventing the sale of illegal timber and timber products in the EU market. Any timber or timber products placed on the market must have sufficient verification to prove it has been legally harvested and exported legally from the country of harvest. The regulation requires a Due Diligence System (DDS) to be implemented to minimize this risk. In order to ensure the traceability of these timber products once they are in the EU market, traders must maintain records of the suppliers and customers.

The DDS must be exercised by the EU operators who place timber products on the EU market for the first time. The key elements of the DDS are:

  • Information: The operator must have access to information describing the timber and timber products, country of harvest, species, quantity, details of the supplier and information on compliance with national legislation.
  • Risk assessment: The operator should assess the risk of illegal timber in his supply chain.
  • Risk mitigation: When the assessment shows that there is a risk of illegal timber in the supply chain, additional information and verification from the supplier is required to prove that risk can be mitigated.

To know how FSC® certification can be used to comply with the EUTR, please write to