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Tackling Illegal Logging and the Related Trade: What Progress and Where Next? Executive Summary

Chatham House’s first assessment of international progress in tackling illegal logging was encouraging. Published in 2010, it found that concerted efforts in the early 2000s to improve law enforcement had resulted in a significant decline in illegal logging in many countries.

This second assessment, conducted in 2012–14, presents a more mixed picture. At the national level progress is clearly evident. Nearly all the consumer countries assessed have reduced the shares of illegal timber in their imports. Although forest governance remains very weak in most of the producer countries, there has been continued improvement in numerous areas. Correspondingly, many of the producer countries assessed have reduced the shares of illegal timber in their exports.

However, at the global level progress has stalled. In the countries assessed, the volume of illegal timber imports had risen by a fifth since the end of the financial crisis to an estimated 60 million m3 (RWE volume) in 2013, almost the level of a decade ago.

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Adelaide Glover
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21 July 2015

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