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International Tropical Timber Agreement (ITTA)

The beginnings of the ITTA date to 1966, when the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD) and Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) proposed the establishment of a tropical timber bureau. By 1973, the emphasis had broadened from market requirements and the availability of tropical timbers to include forest management considerations. Intergovernmental meetings under UNCTAD failed to reach agreement in 1978. A second round of negotiations in Geneva involving 50 countries in 1982 was successful. Here, against the backdrop of two seasons of dramatic fluctuations in supply of tropical timbers on European markets, Japan urged the creation of a commodity agreement to regulate global trade in tropical timber products.

Finally signed in 1983, the ITTA combined commodity trade and nontimber products as well as noncommercial ...

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