Russia decides on roundwood export ban

With the adoption of decree no. 396 on 18 March, the Russian government has confirmed an export ban concerning softwood logs and hardwood sawlogs to come into effect from 1 January 2022. When the regulation comes into effect on 19 April, the previously applicable laws - which stipulated the allocation of quotas for exports of pine, spruce, ayana spruce, silver fir and larch roundwood - will be repealed. Future exports of softwood logs as well as hardwood sawlogs will require payment of a uniform tariff rate which will render exports uneconomical. The export of industrial birch roundwood should remain possible in the future.

In addition to the export ban, on 18 March the government presented a draft for amendments to the currently applicable forestry law which, according to deputy prime minister Victoria Abramchenko, will be discussed in the Duma during the course of April. The revised version of the forestry law is intended to curb illegal roundwood logging in particular. For example, it is to facilitate confiscation of forestry machinery used in illegal harvesting operations. It will also enable the state property agency to sell illegally harvested roundwood promptly after confiscation. At present, a period of up to one year must be observed between confiscation and sale. Moreover, the battle against forest fires is to be ameliorated through the introduction of remote monitoring.

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