Opinion Factsheet 

A new EU Forest Strategy: for forests and the forest-based sector

Opinion Number: CDR 7115/2013
Rapporteur: SPYRIDON Spyros
Commission: NAT
Status: Adopted
Date: 30/01/2014
Show the important role of LRAs in the implementation of the strategy, especially as they are affected first and are responsible for the forests that are closer to them. Ask for means, more participation in decision making.
Ask for better implementation/monitoring tools, such as indicators, mid-term review etc.Also, more flexible funding, incl. from the Partnership Agreement.
Propose a shift of consumer behaviour towards more sustainable choices
Pay particular attention to the effect of the policies on EU SMEs competitiveness.

- welcomes the European Commission's communication on a new forestry strategy which addresses in a comprehensive and balanced way all aspects of sustainable management of the forestry and forest-based sector;

- points out that forests are influenced by economic conditions, not only directly but also over the long term, as there is often a considerable time lapse before effects make themselves felt. Phenomena such as arson, land-use change, illegal logging and poaching are becoming increasingly common. As a result, it is necessary to step up surveillance and carry out checks and cost-benefit studies on planned land use, and to make provision for possible long-term consequences;

- regrets the fact that the European Commission does not refer to the role of local and regional authorities in implementing the strategy. Their participation would ensure a balance between the ever-increasing economic exploitation of forests and sustainable development;

- regrets that the Commission's communication does not have a multi-fund approach, while the targeted funding available under the European Agricultural Fund for Rural Development may not be sufficient to deal with the challenges facing forests;

- considers that adopting the cascade principle for wood could be too restrictive, as not all regions have the infrastructure or companies providing the full range of options for processing and using wood. It would therefore be more realistic to promote the principle of efficient use of resources, as part of a comprehensive approach and under the guidance of local and regional authorities, with the aim of ensuring sustainable management of Europe's forests;

- welcomes and acknowledges the achievements of voluntary certification schemes and recommends that this be broadly underpinned by other measures, including financial instruments. Certification could serve as an instrument to help stem the flow of illegal timber and timber products.



European Parliament

ThinkForest seminar on Forets and the Bioeconomy: future steps organized by the European high-level forum on the future of forests, ThinkForest.The European forest-based sector is undergoing more significant structural changes than for decades, and the next 20 years are likely to change the sector even more. Many of these changes originate outside the sector itself: the need to move societies towards a more resource-efficient bioeconomy, the new economic role of Europe in a globalised world, and the impact of new technologies. Against this background, ThinkForest discusses 'Forests and the bioeconomy: Future steps'.

12 Nov

European Parliament

Hearing on "A new EU Forest Strategy: for forests and the forest-based sector"

04 Nov

CoR Commission activity

The NAT commission conference on"The role of research and innovation in the bio-economy as a lever for increasing youth employment in the agriculture and forestry sector: success stories and future prospects"

18 Sep

Rapporteur's activities

Workshop "Inform-prioritize-collaborate: Cooperation of Regions on Innovation in Forest management, use of wood and forest-related service", organized by The ERIAFF Network(1) (European Regions for Innovation in Agriculture, Food and Forestry), the European Forest Institute (EFI), the European Confederation of Forest Owners (CEPF), the European State Forest Association (EUSTAFOR) and EUROMONTANA (the European Mountain Regions Network). The workshop analysed how the 2014-2020 EU programmes and supporting actions (Rural Development, the EIP-AGRI, Horizon 2020) can help overcoming forest-related challenges through innovation and collaboration. The event provided an opportunity to discuss and set common priorities and to bring together potential stakeholders to work on possible project ideas.

19 May


Conclusions adopted

08 May

CoR Commission activity

The CoR adopted the final opinion during its Plenary session.

29 Jan

Rapporteur's activities

The rapporteur attending "Workshop on the implementation of the new EU forest strategy"

15 Dec

CoR Commission activity

The NAT commission adopted the opinion.

11 Dec

CoR Commission activity

11 Nov

Rapporteur's activities

Meeting at the European Commission

11 Nov

Rapporteur's activities

Conference "European regions for Innovation in Agriculture, food and forestry: rural innovation on the move!" - October 2nd 2013

01 Oct

CoR Commission activity


The NAT commission appointed Mr Spyros Spyridon (EL/EPP) rapporteur on A new EU Forest Strategy

30 Sep

European Commission

Publication COM(2013) 659

19 Sep
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