ATIBT backs STTC as partner

The International Tropical Timber Technical Association (ATIBT) has joined the STTC as Partner.

The ATIBT’s core role is to support development of international trade in tropical timber, both as a viable business, and a means of helping maintain the tropical forest and the habitats and biodiversity it supports.

André de Boer, Secretary General of the European Timber Trade Federation, which is a fellow STTC partner and manages the European STTC programme, including its sustainable procurement policy funding initiative, welcomed the organisation on board.

“We’re very pleased that the ATIBT has joined the STTC,” he said. “Both have the ultimate aim to grow trade in sustainably sourced tropical timber to help incentivise spread of sustainable forest management, and ATIBT’s STTC partnership should be mutually beneficial.”

ATIBT President Robert Hunink agreed that the two bodies shared key goals and that their collaboration could help achieve them.

“ATIBT is aware that, besides helping to increase market demand for certified wood in the traditional timber species, the partnership with STTC is also very important for the introduction and promotion of the so-called ‘lesser used species’,” he said. “Successful promotion of these species is especially crucial for the economic viability of operators in the Congo Basin and, to maintain a balanced species composition in the forest. ATIBT is looking forward to share its broad experience of more than 65 years with STTC.”

ATIBT’s move was also greeted enthusiastically by Hans Stout, programme director of STTC founder-partner, Netherlands-based IDH, the Sustainable Trade initiative.

“IDH is delighted to have ATIBT as an official STTC partner, which is in fact a formalisation of a long and excellent cooperation between IDH and ATIBT,” he said. “ATIBT was already active in the working groups of the STTC and we also cooperated with ATIBT in our Congo Basin [Tropical Timber] Program.”

At the ATIBT International Forum last October, Mr de Boer presented on the ETTF’s new ITTO and STTC-backed online database, which combines business information for mainly tropical producer countries and details of their forest and timber legislation relevant to EU Timber Regulation due diligence.

The Forum also featured the ATIBT’s first Architects Workshop, aimed at developing use of tropical timber in construction.