Get the CIFOR publications update

CIFOR publishes over 400 publications every year on forests and climate change, landscape restoration, rights, forest policy, agroforestry and much more in multiple languages.

Legality Constraints: The Emergence of a Dual Market for Tropical Timber Products?

Legality Constraints: The Emergence of a Dual Market for Tropical Timber Products?

The European Union (EU), the United States of America (USA), and Australia have adopted specific measures to avoid the placing of illegal timber on their markets. These measures might encourage the diversion of timber products from traditional large importers to destinations with a less stringent regulatory framework. During 2001–2013, the international trade in tropical primary timber products (logs; sawnwood; veneers and plywood) decreased by 13% in volume and increased by almost 5% in value. Imports by Australia, the EU, and the USA halved, while those by emerging economies such as China and India initially remained stable and later increased. Tropical timber products—mostly logs and sawnwood—might have been diverted towards emerging economies over the period considered. This general trend is confirmed when analyzing imports from countries that are implementing voluntary partnership agreements (VPA) within the EU Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade (FLEGT) Action Plan. Several factors might influence these market dynamics, including changes induced by the 2008 financial crisis and the increasing domestic demand for timber products by emerging nations. The effects of legality measures on market trends are still unclear. Nonetheless, they might have encouraged uncertainty with regards to traditional importers and favored emerging ones.

Authors: Masiero, M.; Pettenella, D.; Cerutti, P.O.

Topic: illegal logging,timber trade,markets,standards,law

Publication Year: 2015

ISSN: 1999-4907

Source: Forests 6(10): 3452-3482

DOI: 10.3390/f6103452

Creative Commons License

This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

Altmetric score:

Download Option:

Export Citation

Related viewing


CIFOR website usability survey

We're conducting research on our website and we'd love to hear from you about your experience on This will help us make improvements and prioritize new features. The survey should only take 5 minutes, and your responses are completely anonymous.

If you have any questions about the survey, please email us:

We really appreciate your input!

Start survey
I don’t want to participate
Remind me later