In order to combat climate change and biodiversity loss, import companies registered in EU countries will now have to ensure in future that no forests have been felled or damaged for products sold. inside the Schengen area.
This Wednesday, the EU Parliament approved the new rules by 552 votes to 44, with 43 abstentions. The text must now also be formally approved by the Council; it will then be published in the Official Journal of the EU and will enter into force 20 days later.
Although imports from certain countries or imports of certain raw materials are not prohibited, companies are only allowed to sell products in the EU if the suppliers concerned have submitted a declaration confirming that the product in question does not does not come from an area that was deforested after December 31, 2020, nor has it caused damage to forests and in particular irreplaceable primary forests after December 31, 2020.
As foreseen in the original Commission proposal, the new legislation covers livestock, cocoa, coffee, palm oil, soya and timber, including products containing, fed with or made from these materials raw materials (such as leather, chocolate and furniture). During the negotiations, Parliament succeeded in extending the regulations to rubber, charcoal, printed matter and certain derivatives of palm oil.
Parliament has also provided a broader definition of forest degradation. It now includes the conversion of primary or naturally regrowing forests to plantation forests or other wooded areas.