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WhatWood Blog Woodworking Softwood lumber exports from Russia grew 8% in Jan-Sep 2014

Softwood lumber exports from Russia grew 8% in Jan-Sep 2014

23 November 2014 ` 19:04  

Deliveries of Russian softwood lumber to the export markets for the first nine months of 2014 increased by 8% to 16.3 million m3, according to analysts of WhatWood agency. The highest growth was shown by Egypt (+23% to 1.2 million m3). China increased deliveries by 11% to 6.2 million m3, Europe – by 9% to 1.6 million m3. A significant decrease occurred in the Japanese market – shipments fell by 12% to 629 thousand m3. This development was expected: an increase in the consumption tax in this country in April 2014 has led to the decline in construction activity.

Despite the relatively high growth of export volumes to key regions, it can be noted that prices fell significantly in some markets. In Japan, which is a premium market for Russian producers, prices for three quarters of 2014 fell by 6-10%. Having started already in November 2013, the decline continued almost without interruption until September 2014. However, there is moderate optimism that the prices will somewhat stabilize in the fourth quarter of 2014 to early 2015, WhatWood analysts say.

China is increasing its imports of sawn timber from Russia steadily, but keeps prices at the minimum level (-1% for 9 months of 2014, year-on-year). On the European market this year, varied dynamics was observed, with the average price being 8% higher than in the same period of 2013.

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