Malaysian Timber Certification Council (MTCC) dismisses the results in the WWF’s Forest Certification Assessment Tool (CAT) report released on 18th May 2015 as part of a series of measures taken by WWF to promote its own founded Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) scheme, rather than responding to the wider societal interest of promoting sustainable forest management.

MTCC was approached by WWF to participate in the WWF CAT assessment in late 2013 and made to understand that the CAT is a set of guiding indicators developed by WWF to assess and evaluate the various and varying certification schemes and standards globally.

MTCC declined participation after noting that WWF would be assessing the PEFC International’s scheme. As a PEFC-endorsed scheme, MTCC chose to focus the limited resources that it has into efforts on implementing and improving the scheme.

Moreover, MTCC has reservation that the CAT which was developed based purely on WWF’s criteria and indicators (C&I) and ISEAL’s requirements, which in MTCC’s opinion has inbuilt flaws and biasness that would determine an outcome in favour of the FSC. The CAT, at the very outset discriminates against non-ISEAL members, such as the PEFC and the MTCS, which subscribe to the IAF accreditation processes. MTCC also questioned the motive behind the MTCS being the only national scheme to be assessed and Malaysia being singled out as the country in the study.

Notwithstanding the above, MTCC regrets that WWF proceeded to assess the MTCS and published the outcome of the study without any verification to support the assessment. MTCC questions the integrity of this report which was intentionally designed to favour the FSC scheme and discriminate against other schemes, and hence has failed to guarantee no biasness in the assessment process.

MTCC strongly believes that there is no ‘one-size fits all’ solution to global sustainability issues, especially on matters that are as complex and delicate relating to land and forest management, against the need for socio-economic development.

Following the publication of the WWF CAT Assessments on WWF’s website, MTCC has issued a press release in The Netherlands on MTCC’s position regarding the CAT assessment result. To read about the press release, please click here: Press Release – MTCC Publishes its View on CAT Report