BVRio and Ghana Forestry Commission host Responsible Timber Trade Fair in Accra
As part of its mission to promote legal and certified timber from tropical countries, the Brazilian NGO BVRio, in collaboration with the Timber Industry Development Division (TIDD) of the Ghana Forestry Commission, launched the Responsible Timber Trade Fair (www.bvriotradefairs.org) at the 22nd Ghana International Trade Fair which opened in Accra yesterday.
The event - to close tomorrow 2 March 2018 - features exhibit stands for timber companies to promote their products and a two-day Conference on the Legal and Certified Timber Trade, with an impressive selection of Ghanaian and International speakers.
Conference topics include: the status, challenges and next steps of the FLEGT-VPA process in Ghana, Liberia, Cameroon and Côte d’lvoire; an overview of timber sector in each of these countries; and the requirements of buyers from China and the EU.
The second day of the Conference will host the launch of the Ghana Wood Tracking System (GWTS) Public Portal, developed by Civic Response in conjunction with the Forestry Commission. The purpose of the portal is to enhance due diligence processes and demonstrate the transparency and credibility of the Ghana Legality Assurance Scheme.
The illegal trade of tropical timber is one of the main drivers of environmental degradation, human rights abuses and corruption. To tackle illegality in the sector and support the trade of legal timber, international legislation such as the EU Timber Regulation (EU TR), the US Lacey Act, and the Australia Illegal Logging Prohibition Act have been developed.
Thus, the objective of the fair is to promote and expose timber companies that embrace legality and the FLEGT-VPA process, and certification, to timber traders from the EU and China. BVRio expects that the Responsible Timber Trade Fair will raise awareness about timber legality and help to generate an increase in the international demand for legally and sustainably sourced timber products from West and Central Africa.