The first quarter of the year saw the export turnover of timber and wood products reach an estimated US$3.94 billion, a year-on-year rise of 3%, according to the Import-Export Department under the Ministry of Industry and Trade.
Moving forward, the import potential of the United States shows that a sharp increase in wood exports to the US market will contribute to further promoting the wood industry’s growth in the year ahead.
Furthermore, the export of wood and wood products can be viewed as the highlight of the agricultural sector. With the second highest export of wood and wood products in Asia and a fast growth rate of 17% per year, economic experts anticipated that wood exports will continue to grow and flourish this year.
Despite this, the timber industry is currently facing many challenges that must be addressed in the near future.
Although the country ranks second in terms wood and wood product exports in Asia, Dr. To Xuan Phuc, an analyst from Forest Trends, said that the local wood industry is facing great challenges in terms of raw material supply for exports. This comes as the sharply-increasing price of raw wood is currently threatening the wood export industry.
Vo Quang Ha, general director of Tan Vinh Cuu Joint Stock Company (TAVICO), also said that wood imports in the near future are set to be very difficult as Europe will move to reduce exports, while keeping a part of raw wood volume to compensate supply shortage from Russia.
Amid this situation, Nguyen Liem, chairman of the Binh Duong Furniture Association, emphasised that the wood industry is in need of more raw material areas and large-scale preliminary processing centres. To overcome the “bottleneck” of lack of raw materials, the forestry industry is in the process of intensifying the standard material growing areas, he added.