Christophe hansen

Deal on new law to ensure products causing deforestation are not sold in the EU

To fight climate change and biodiversity loss, the new law obliges companies to ensure that a series of products sold in the EU do not come from deforested land anywhere in the world.

On the 6th December 2022, MEPs reached a preliminary deal with EU governments on a new law on deforestation-free products that will make it obligatory for companies to verify and issue a so-called “due diligence” statement that goods placed on the EU market have not led to deforestation and forest degradation anywhere in the world after 31 December 2020. According to the agreed text, while no country or commodity as such will be banned, companies will not be allowed to sell their products in the EU without this type of statement. As requested by MEPs, companies will also have to verify compliance with relevant legislation of the country of production including on human rights and that the rights of concerned indigenous peoples have been respected.

The new law would guarantee European consumers that the products they buy do not contribute to the destruction and degradation of forests, including of irreplaceable primary forests, and would hence reduce the EU’s contribution to climate change and biodiversity loss globally.

After the deal, rapporteur Christophe Hansen (EPP, LU) said: “It wasn’t easy but we delivered a strong and ambitious result ahead of the biodiversity COP15 conference in Montreal. This important new tool will protect forests globally and cover more commodities and products such as rubber, printed paper and charcoal. Moreover, we ensured that the rights of indigenous peoples, our first allies in fighting deforestation, are effectively protected. We also secured a strong definition of forest degradation, which will cover an extensive area of forest. I hope that this innovative regulation will give impetus to the protection of forests around the globe and inspire other countries at the COP15.”

The products covered by the new legislation are: cattle, cocoa, coffee, palm-oil, soya and wood, including products that contain, have been fed with or have been made using these commodities (such as leather, chocolate and furniture), as in the original Commission proposal. During the talks, MEPs successfully added rubber, charcoal, printed paper products and a number of palm oil derivatives. Parliament also secured a wider definition of forest degradation that includes the conversion of primary forests or naturally regenerating forests into plantation forests or into other wooded land and the conversion of primary forests into planted forests.

The competent EU authorities will have access to relevant information provided by the companies, such as geolocation coordinates, and conduct checks. They can for example use satellite monitoring tools and DNA analysis to check where products come from.

The Commission will classify countries, or part thereof, into low, standard or high risk within 18 months of this regulation entering into force and the proportion of checks on operators will be performed according to the country’s risk level: 9% for high risk, 3% for standard risk and 1% for low risk. For high-risk countries, member states would also have to check 9% of total volumes.

Published on the 6th December 2022

La commission de l’environnement, de la santé publique et de la sécurité alimentaire est la plus grande commission du Parlement européen. Elle travaille, entre autres sujets, sur la biodiversité, l’économie circulaire, la santé publique, la sécurité alimentaire, la qualité de l’air et de l’eau, ainsi que l’utilisation de produits chimiques et de pesticides. Je suis particulièrement engagé dans le domaine de la politique environnementale et climatique, ayant par exemple travaillé sur le règlement sur la déforestation.

La commission des affaires économiques et monétaires se concentre sur la réglementation des services financiers, la libre circulation des capitaux et des paiements, la politique fiscale et de concurrence, la surveillance de la Banque centrale européenne et le système financier international. Au sein de la commission, je me concentre sur les obligations vertes européennes.

La commission du commerce international (coordinateur du PPE) travaille sur les relations commerciales de l’Union avec les pays du monde entier ainsi que sur les instruments et outils qui améliorent le marché intérieur de l’Union. Mes priorités sont la création de nouveaux accords commerciaux équitables et durables, tels que l’accord commercial UE-Japon, ainsi que les subventions étrangères.

Der INTA-Ausschuss befasst sich mit Handelsbeziehungen der EU mit Ländern auf der ganzen Welt und mit Instrumenten zur Verbesserung des EU-Binnenmarktes. Meine Schwerpunktbereiche sind die Schaffung neuer, fairer und nachhaltiger Handelsabkommen, wie beispielsweise das Handelsabkommen zwischen der EU und Japan, sowie ausländische Subventionen.

Der ECON-Ausschuss konzentriert sich auf die Regulierung von Finanzdienstleistungen, die Kapital- und Zahlungsverkehrsfreiheit, die Steuer- und Wettbewerbspolitik, die Aufsicht über die Europäische Zentralbank und das internationale Finanzsystem. Mein Arbeitsschwerpunkt in dem Ausschuss sind europäische grüne Anleihen.

Der ENVI-Ausschuss ist der größte Ausschuss im Europäischen Parlament. Seine Prioritäten sind unter anderem biologische Vielfalt, Kreislaufwirtschaft, öffentliche Gesundheit, Lebensmittelsicherheit, Luft- und Wasserqualität, Einsatz von Chemikalien und Pestiziden. Ich engagiere mich insbesondere im Bereich der Umwelt- und Klimapolitik, beispielsweise auf der Verordnung über Entwaldung.

ENVI is hence the largest committee in the European Parliament. Their priorities are, among others, biodiversity, the circular economy, public health, food safety, air and water quality, the use of chemicals and pesticides. I am especially engaged in the area of ​​environmental and climate policy, such as the deforestation regulation.

ECON focuses on the regulation of financial services, the free movement of capital and payments, taxation and competition policies, oversight of the European Central Bank, and the international financial system. My focus in in the committee is the European Green Bonds.

INTA works on trade-relations of the EU with countries all around the globe and on instruments and tools improving the EU’s internal market. My focus areas are the creation of new, fair and sustainable trade agreements, such as the trade agreement between the EU and Japan, as well as foreign subsidies.