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From the 1st January 2009 Franz-Josef Kall (62) is the new President of the European Timber Trade Association (FEBO)

26 January 2009

From the 1st January 2009 Franz-Josef Kall (62) is the new President of the European Timber Trade Association (FEBO)

He will continue in this post for the next two years following Géraud Spire from Charleville-Mézières, France, who is also President of UFEMAT, the European Association of National Builders’ Merchants Associates.
Franz-Josef Kall, the owner of a long-established timber trading company in Aachen in the triborder area of Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands, has been involved in federation work for a considerable time and for the last nine years has also been the German Timber Trade Association’s delegate to FEBO.
The new president sees the emphasis of his work in the continuing professionalisation of FEBO and will be concentrating on intensifying the involvement and good co-operation of the member associations.
The representation of interests in Brussels is a key task for FEBO. Nowadays more than 75% of all economically relevant decisions are made not at a national level but in Brussels so it is ever more important that the sector’s interests are given a hearing on the European stage. NGOs, too, are acting increasingly on an international level.
Mr. Kall aims to increase contact with the European Commission and with the appropriate MEPs. FEBO’s first Parliamentary Evening last November in Brussels with over 70 guests will provide a fine basis for this.
Additionally, the timber trade as a whole must find a common voice in Brussels on essential matters. The fragmentation of the European timber and timber importing trades under the umbrella of several federations will have to be overcome in the medium-term. Here, the new president will continue the efforts of his predecessor, Géraud Spire.
Mr. Kall also stresses FEBO’s role as a forum for the exchange of information and a network for contacts. Via FEBO the members can discuss their concerns with their neighbours. FEBO also channels information from the European authorities and other federations to its members.
Franz-Josef Kall would like to extend FEBO’s basis towards eastern and south-eastern Europe and to involve the members more closely in opinion-making. At present FEBO consists of 13 national member associations concentrated in northern, central, western and southern Europe. FEBO has its base in Wiesbaden, Germany, whereby many activities take place on the spot in Brussels.
Ms Lutgart Behets-Oschmann, commissioned by the German Timber Trade Federation, runs the FEBO General Secretariat.