|The Australian Senate Committee has released their report into the Australian Illegal Logging Bill
The Australian Senate Committee has released their report into the Australian Illegal Logging Bill. It can be accessed here
The report refers to the PNGFIA submission, on a number of occasions - cited at Page 25 twice, P29, P61 twice, P62 thrice, & P70 .
It outlines several recommendations, reproduced below.
5.19 The committee recommends the Government consider alternatives to provisions for timber industry certifiers and the certifier requirements in relation to them from those listed in the bill.
5.38 The committee recommends that importers provide a mandatory and explicit declaration of legality of product at the border and that such a requirement be incorporated into the bill.
5.39 The committee recommends that the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry ensure that the declaration requirements are consistent, to the fullest extent possible, with those in the US Lacey Act and EU regulation and others that meet a similar standard.
5.40 The committee recommends that the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry in consultation with the Australian Customs and Border Protection Service adapt the current Customs declaration to incorporate the bill's declaration requirements.
5.41 The committee recommends that the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Forestry give consideration to providing visibility to the declaration process and that transparency is assured by way of:
- A requirement that the importer regularly publish, or provide publication of, the declarations in a publicly accessible form;
- A requirement that at a minimum, an annual audit of the importer be undertaken to determine the legality of their timber;
- A requirement that the importer publishes, or provides for publication, a report outcome of the audit; and
- A requirement on the part of the Commonwealth Government to undertake random audits of the importer declarations, and where warranted (based on risk assessment) undertake further investigation of the supply chain from forest to importer.
5.52 The committee recommends that regulations prescribe that importers and processors should demonstrate due diligence under one of the following:
- an internationally recognised third-party certification scheme, or
- an individual country initiative, or
- have in place a management system to ensure legal compliance.
Further information can be sought from:
The Executive Officer
Forest Industries Association
P.O. Box 229,
Papua New Guinea