WhatWood: Russian softwood lumber prices fell by 22% in 2015
In 2015, sales of softwood lumber from Russia to foreign markets increased by 5% to 22.4 million m3, but the average value fell by $753 million to $2.7 billion. General decline in prices amounted to 22% in dollar terms.
China, the major market for Russian softwood lumber, increased deliveries by 18% to 9.8 million m3, while the import value fell by 8% to $973 million. Russia’s share in the Chinese imported lumber market was about 50%.
Deliveries to Uzbekistan, the second largest market, fell by 14% to 2.4 million m3, while the total import value was $210 million (-49%).
In the summer of 2015, imports to Egypt, which is the third largest consumer of Russian lumber, reached a historical maximum (over 200,000 m3 monthly), but from September to December, the volumes were steadily declining: by 12% every month. As a result, the total annual volume increased 33% to 1.9 million m3, while the value of imports fell by 3.6% to $310 million.
“The drop in the price of Russian softwood lumber in export markets is in line with global trend of price reduction for all basic commodities. The decline in export prices was influenced by the strengthening of the US dollar against the currencies of importing countries and rising supply along with shrinking global demand,” commented WhatWood timber industry analytic agency in a press release.
An in-depth review of the situation in export markets for Russian softwood lumber is available in the latest issue of the agency’s publication WhatWood Monthly Lumber Report.