Progress in the implementation of the Indonesia-EU FLEGT VPA to combat illegal logging, foster good forest governance and promote trade in legal timber products
The Indonesia-EU Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade (FLEGT) Voluntary Partnership Agreement (VPA) Joint Implementation Committee (JIC) held its 6th meeting on 1 March 2018 in Jakarta.
At the meeting, the JIC endorsed a joint action plan for VPA implementation in 2018. The plan lists 29 actions for the Parties to implement this year. It covers nine action areas, which include: supply chain control; licensing; independent monitoring; public disclosure of information; market outreach; and periodic evaluation, impact monitoring and independent market monitoring.
The JIC also adopted the summary report of the first periodic evaluation. This is an independent audit that checks Indonesia's timber legality assurance system, or SVLK, functions as described in the VPA. The report concluded that the Government agencies and other bodies tasked with controlling and verifying legal compliance of operations ensure that SVLK functions are credible. It identified several areas for improvement, some of which Indonesia is already addressing. The JIC agreed that the next periodic evaluation should begin in August 2018.
The Parties discussed matters related to the issuance of FLEGT licences and identified concrete actions to ensure its smooth functioning. Regarding independent forest monitoring, Indonesia provided an update on funding support, and on publication of information on cases of non-compliance and related follow-up actions. The EU provided updates on the work of the FLEGT Independent Market Monitor (IMM) and on the implementation of the EU Timber Regulation by its Member States. The IMM presented its 2018 workplan for Indonesia and explained its role in improving awareness in key EU member state markets about FLEGT timber. The Parties also discussed the need to ensure consistency between Indonesia’s national regulations and the VPA’s requirements.
The Parties will next meet in May 2018 for a Joint Expert Meeting, which will discuss technical issues related to VPA implementation.
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