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Guarding West Africa’s Forests: Exploring Ways to Put an End to Illegal Chinese Timber Trade

Together, the United States and China import $40 billion worth of timber products each year, quite a bit of which is harvested illegally from West Africa’s rapidly shrinking forests. But cracking down on this illicit trade is extremely difficult given that many of the region’s governments are actively complicit.

The Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA), an NGO based in the U.S. and UK, recently traced how Chinese merchants trafficked rosewood timber from the forests of Equatorial Guinea back to China and eventually, all the way to store shelves at Home Depot in the United States.

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What is The China-Global South Project?


The China-Global South Project is passionately independent, non-partisan and does not advocate for any country, company or culture.


A carefully curated selection of the day’s most important China-Global South stories. Updated 24 hours a day by human editors. No bots, no algorithms.


Diverse, often unconventional insights from scholars, analysts, journalists and a variety of stakeholders in the China-Global South discourse.


A unique professional network of China-Africa scholars, analysts, journalists and other practioners from around the world.