If you are looking for EIA UK, it's overhere.

TV program reveals Holzindustrie Schweighofer’s involvement in illegal timber trade

TIMBER MAKES THE WORLD GO ROUND from Secvential on Vimeo.

A video released by the Romanian investigative program In Premiera in November 2015, titled Timber Makes the World Go Round, has been rereleased this week with English subtitles. The video paints a vivid picture of illegalities at three stages of timber supply chains leading to Holzindustrie Schweighofer (Schweighofer), an Austrian timber company which has grown to become the largest buyer of softwoods in Romania. Schweighofer’s role in incentivizing and receiving illegal timber in Romania was recently featured in a detailed EIA report, released in October 2015.

The video shows organized criminal networks laundering illegal timber with the complicity of corrupt government officials. Dubious commercial entities create fake paperwork to legitimize illegal cutting; the paperwork is then accepted by Schweighofer officials on a no-questions-asked premise. Additionally, forest inspectors ignore illegalities and bribery is commonplace. If and when activists speak out against the corruption, they are threatened.

Drawing from interviews with two former Romanian Environmental Ministers, current and former forestry officials, and a wood delivery driver, the short film provides testimony on illegal logging in Romania and adds to the mounting evidence of Schweighofer’s knowing acceptance of illegal timber trade in Romania.

In one powerful scene, the journalist behind this documentary is violently threatened by a forester and a sawmill owner in a forest in the region of Apuseni National Park. When the journalist reports this incident to local police, he is told that law enforcement is powerless to stop illegal logging in the forest. “Basically the whole community is united against us,” says the officer. “Foresters are like small local kings, people won’t turn them in or collaborate with us.”

Another scene depicts a truck driver, who reveals that while having been a driver to Schweighofer’s mills for over five years, roughly 80 percent of his deliveries were illegal. The film also exposes personal relationships between forestry officials and key Schweighofer employees by exploring photos and exchanges on social media. Further information on EIA’s work in Romania and on Schweighofer can be found here.

View all Blog Posts

Recent Blog Posts

New global protection measures for threatened rosewood trees start this week
11/25/2019
A number of threatened tree species have been given a new lease on life. At its 18th Conference of the Parties (CoP18) in August 2019, CITES granted protection to several species – adding them to Appendix II of the binding global wildlife treaty. Ninety days after the decisions were taken in Geneva, the listings for mukula and mulanje cedar are now coming into effect.
Raw Intelligence: GOCA
10/18/2019
Mr. Lu is the Secretary of the Association of Overseas Chinese in Gabon and a leading figure in the Forest Union of the Asian Industry in Gabon (UFIAG). He doesn’t miss an opportunity to publicly defend Chinese logging companies in Gabon, and to assert that these entrepreneurs operate with the best of intentions.

Recent Reports

Mukula Cartel
12/05/2019
In Zambia the Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA) found that a handful of very high profile figures have apparently orchestrated and facilitated massive trafficking operations for years that are driving mukula rosewood trees to the edge of commercial extinction, devastating vulnerable forests and threatening communities’ livelihoods.
EIA 2018 Impact Report
09/09/2019
In 2018 the Environmental Investigation Agency continued to confront the greatest environmental threats facing the world today. The EIA team pursued, documented and exposed the activities of syndicates that threaten endangered species, damage the climate and ozone layer, and drive the trade in timber stolen from the world’s most important remaining forests.

Recent Press Releases

EIA looks forward to the release of an uncensored rosewood investigative report by the Ghanaian government
01/23/2020
EIA looks forward to the release of an uncensored rosewood investigative report by the Ghanaian government
EIA Welcomes China's New Law to Ban Illegal Timber
01/20/2020
EIA Welcomes China's New Law to Ban Illegal Timber

Recent Videos

Mukula Cartel
12/05/2019
In Zambia the Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA) found that a handful of very high profile figures have apparently orchestrated and facilitated massive trafficking operations for years that are driving mukula rosewood trees to the edge of commercial extinction, devastating vulnerable forests and threatening communities’ livelihoods
Raw Intelligence: GOCA
10/18/2019
Mr. Lu is the Secretary of the Association of Overseas Chinese in Gabon and a leading figure in the Forest Union of the Asian Industry in Gabon (UFIAG). He doesn’t miss an opportunity to publicly defend Chinese logging companies in Gabon, and to assert that these entrepreneurs operate with the best of intentions.
Follow us @eiaenvironment on twitter for the latest updates!