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Trade Policies & Measures

Trade-related measures that may influence teak growing and markets include national import tariff structures applied to teak products, non-tariff measures such as requests for certification, and boycotts by retailers or consumer groups.

The Uruguay Round of the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) formalized a general trend in trade liberalization for forest products, which applies also to trade in teak. In general, the most significant restrictions on trade in primary teak products are those applied by potential exporting countries, particularly log export bans and export taxes on sawn timber. Nonetheless, considerable import tariffs, commonly 10 to 15 percent, are still applied to some processed products, such as joinery and furniture, in important developed-country markets. Such tariffs can lead to discouragingly high prices for teak products. Probably the most significant recent change influencing global teak trade was the removal, in 1992, of import licensing requirements for logs in India. As a consequence India is now able to import large volumes of teak logs, particularly from Africa, to make up for the domestic shortfall caused by the country's restrictions on teak logging.