This provides a link to the New Zealand Parliamentary Counsel Office website, and the text of the Forest (Legal Harvest Assurance) Amendment Bill, which received Royal assent and became an Act of Parliament on 17 May, 2023.
A new Act will stop the import of illegally harvested timber and also provides the international market with confidence in New Zealand’s timber and timber products by introducing a new legislative framework for legal harvest assurance.
Minister Henare said major trading partners such as Australia, United States, the European Union, Vietnam, China, Indonesia, Japan and Republic of Korea have implemented or are developing their own legislation to prevent the trade of illegal harvested timber.
“This assurance system will bring us in line with these countries to ensure the protection of New Zealand’s forestry and wood processing sector. We export nearly 85 per cent of our timber products to these countries. Without a legislative scheme for legal harvest, we run the risk that we can no longer export to these markets.”
The Act allows for up to three years for commencement and a further 12 months for compliance. The Ministry for Primary Industries and Te Uru Rākau – New Zealand Forestry Service will be administering and facilitating its implementation. During this time, officials will consult and engage with industry to develop regulations that are practical yet robust.
Deforestation Inc. reporters in a dozen countries investigated weak government efforts and loopholes allowing companies to keep trading Myanmar teak, a natural resource controlled by the military junta.
The Deforestation Inc. investigation by ICIJ and its 39 partners found that timber traders in three continents have continued to import Myanmar teak by the ton to supply shipbuilders and furniture manufacturers around the world, while consumers may be unwittingly financing the junta’s repressive campaign.
The reporters visited boat shows in Fort Lauderdale, Amsterdam and Paris to learn about the international teak market. They interviewed timber traders in 11 countries and pored over documents leaked from Myanmar’s tax agency and shared with ICIJ by Justice for Myanmar, a human rights group, U.K.-based news outlet Finance Uncovered and Distributed Denial of Secrets, a data transparency group.
Cases from Slovenia, Croatia, USA, Italy, the Netherlands, Germany, New Zealand, Turkey, Taiwan, France, and India are included.
Proposed new legislation to reduce the risk that timber imported into Aotearoa New Zealand is sourced from illegal logging is a positive first step but it should go further, the Green Party says.
The Forests (Legal Harvest Assurance) Amendment Bill passed its first reading in Parliament last night. The Bill will establish a legal framework intended to ensure that timber logged overseas and imported into Aotearoa New Zealand can be verified as being legally harvested.
A court filing reveals lucrative timber exports were a strong focus of forest-clearing by a part-Kiwi-owned firm operating in an area with substantial tropical rainforest in West Papua
Documents tabled in a New Zealand court case show how a Kiwi developer and a company which has cut down Papuan rainforest intend to make around $110 million from the timber to make floors and decks – in stark contrast to statements made in a recent Newsroom investigation.
Newsroom has secured the documentary evidence that lays out in detail how an Indonesian company linked to a New Zealand property developer intends to make close to A$100 million from clearing trees in an area of primary rainforest in Papua.
Under the Bill, timber harvested in New Zealand and overseas, and used in products made here or imported, will have to be verified as being legally harvested.
Click here to access the Global Illegal Logging and Associated Trade (ILAT) Risk assessment tool and to download the Forest Trends User Guide describing the functionality of the ILAT Risk Data Tool.
Click here to access the Cattle Data Tool.