The Mozambican parliament has unanimously passed a bill that will ban the export of unprocessed timber logs in an effort to protect the country’s hardwood forests, reports FSC’s Africa Desk.
Under the new law, which came into effect on 1 January 2017, semi-processed timber (such as beams, planks and parquet) may be exported, but will be subject to an export tax. There is no tax on the export of finished wooden goods, such as furniture.
The law is expected to halt the devastation of the country’s natural forests.
China is the main importer of wood from Mozambique, and a number of incidents of Chinese nationals participating in logging without a licence, have been recorded.
According to the Mozambican Minister for Land, Environment and Rural Development, Celso Correia, the authorities have seized more illegal wood in one year than has been seized since the country achieved independence.
The Mozambican Government has also embarked on an initiative to establish a national forestry certification scheme.