Being a PEFC-endorsed scheme, the MTCS that is operated by MTCC is required to undergo assessment for re-endorsement after a period of five years. Hence, in early August 2013, MTCC submitted the MTCS documents to the PEFC Council for the purpose of assessment for the re-endorsement of the MTCS.
As a result of the assessment, the independent consultant appointed by the PEFC Council had raised minor non-conformities for the MC&I(Natural Forest) standard, whereby compliance could be achieved by developing and issuing an interpretation guidance without making any changes to the standard.
This interpretation guidance aims to provide added clarity to ensure consistency in the interpretation of the requirements of some of the Criteria and Indicators of the standard, covering aspects relating to:
(i) Criterion 1.3 pertaining to all binding international agreements applicable to forest management;
(ii) Criterion 6.6 pertaining to the prohibition in the use of chemical pesticides banned by international agreements;
(iii) Criterion 6.10 pertaining to occurrence of forest conversion to plantations or non-forest land uses; and
(iv) the rights of indigenous peoples with regard to the interpretation of “within the relevant federal, state and local laws” and the term “free, prior and informed consent” covering a number of Criteria and Indicators in the standard.
The guidance document GD-NF 2/2014 – Guidelines for the interpretation of requirements in MC&I(Natural Forest) was approved by the MTCC Board on 6 June 2014. The Board is made up of members that represent the various stakeholder interest groups in Malaysia, including the environmental and social NGOs, workers unions, timber associations, government agencies, and research and academic institutions.
The GD-NF 2/2014, which forms an integral part of the MC&I(Natural Forest) standard has to be complied by the FMU manager undergoing forest management certification under the MTCS.
Click HERE to download the guideline.