No decision has been taken at EU country level. This issue will be discussed again at the next meeting of the Commission Expert Group/Multi-Stakeholder Platform on Protecting and Restoring the World’s Forests, including the EU Timber Regulation and the FLEGT Regulation
As mentioned last week, at the last meeting, the European Commission and the EUTR/FLEGT group of experts from the 26 Member States put forward a proposal on timber imports from Gabon, aimed at putting a stop to these imports because due diligence has become impossible since the recent coup d'état.
Since then, numerous discussions have taken place both in Gabon and in Europe, and we have been informed that this issue will be discussed again at the next meeting of the EUTR/FLEGT expert group in November. But any misunderstanding must be cleared up: no such decision has been taken at EU country level.
We must now fully reassure the group of EUTR/FLEGT experts that it will be possible to carry out audits and visits to administrations and production sites in Gabon.
Gabon is very committed to sustainable forest management and is at the forefront of traceability issues. What's more, shortly after the coup d'état on 30 August, a return to normal was observed with no hindrance to the movement of goods and people.
More specifically, we can report that :
Together with the stakeholders concerned, we will be working to dispel any remaining doubts.
A meeting with the Brussels authorities is scheduled for next week.