PRESS RELEASE, 5 March 2010
MTCC Optimistic of Outlook for Endorsement of MTCS by Dutch government
The Malaysian Timber Certification Council (MTCC) welcomes the conclusion of the Dutch Timber Procurement Assessment Committee (TPAC) that the Malaysian Timber Certification Scheme (MTCS), the scheme operated by MTCC, meets the requirements of the Dutch procurement policy. “Due to the thoroughness of the TPAC’s assessment of the MTCS, we can only anticipate a positive decision by the Dutch Minister for the Environment to accept MTCS- certified timber products under the policy,” said Mr. Chew Lye Teng, CEO of MTCC.
The MTCS started operating in 2001 as a scheme to conduct independent assessments for forest management and chain of custody certification and award certificates for sustainably produced timber products. The recognition of the MTCS by the Dutch government under the ‘Duurzaam Inkopen’ (Sustainable Sourcing) programme is not only an important incentive to further strengthen the efforts to achieve sustainable forest management in Malaysia, but also sends a strong signal to the Malaysian timber industry on the market benefits of manufacturing and exporting MTCS-certified products.
The Netherlands is the largest market for Malaysian timber and related products in the EU and accounts for about 49% of the cumulative exports of MTCS-certified timber products. Prior to the recognition of MTCS as providing assurance for sustainability by TPAC, the Danish, British, French and German governments have recognised the MTCS as providing assurance of legal and/or sustainable timber. In addition the Keurhout system in The Netherlands has accepted the MTCS under the Protocol for Legal Origin, and specific certificates under the Protocol for Sustainable Forest Management.
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Malaysian Timber Certification Council (MTCC)
MTCC was established to develop and operate a voluntary national timber certification scheme, the Malaysian Timber Certification Scheme (MTCS), in order to provide independent audits of forest management practices to ensure sustainable forest management in Malaysia as well as to meet the market demand for certified timber products. Currently, nine Forest Management Units (FMUs) covering a total area of 4.60 million hectares of permanent forests in Malaysia are certified under the MTCS. 175 timber manufacturers and exporters have been awarded the chain of custody certificate which qualifies them to supply MTCS-certified timber products to the market. In May 2009, the MTCS was endorsed by the Programme for the Endorsement of Forest Certification schemes (PEFC), the largest forest certification programme in the world.