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German, Austrian and Swiss sawmills blast Brussels over EU forest regulation
[Mar 7, 2024]

The associations of the sawmill and wood industry in the DACH (Germany, Austria and Switzerland) countries have met in Zurich to discuss the current economic and political conditions, including impact from the EU Deforestation Regulation (EUDR).

The focus of the discussions was increasing regulation from Brussels and its impact on the industry.

With the EUDR, companies across countries are faced with major challenges and significant burdens and fear disruptions along the entire value chain.

¡°Forests and wood have been facing more and more challenges at European level in recent years,¡± the association representatives stated after the meeting.

¡°While the economic conditions have deteriorated significantly in recent months, additional regulations and documentation requirements lead to considerable additional burdens and sometimes unfulfillable requirements for companies.

¡°Instead of targeted reductions in bureaucracy and thus setting the framework for long-term economic recovery and transformation towards climate protection, politicians in Brussels are accepting locational and competitive disadvantages that could lead to distortions across countries.¡±

They called for ¡°urgently needed¡± adjustments to the EUDR, which ¡°hangs over the industry like the sword of Damocles¡±.

The test phase of the EUDR, they added, revealed glaring deficiencies and showed that implementation according to current specifications is not possible.

¡°From the beginning, people warned against over-regulation and unrealistic specifications. The deadline and requirements of the EUDR must now be adjusted so that a practical and legally secure implementation with mitigations is guaranteed for countries with demonstrably stable forest areas, sustainable forest management and comprehensive national legislation.

¡°Otherwise, the entire value chain risks sinking into bureaucracy ¨C with negative consequences for climate protection, sustainable housing and the economic development of the entire EU.¡±

The German Sawmill and Wood Industry Association (DeSH), the Austrian Wood Industry Association (FVHI) and the Swiss wood industry want to intensify their co-operation and exchange in order to strengthen forests and wood at the European level in the face of increasing EU legislation.

Source: ttjonline.com