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Wood exports to EU to reach $1bn by 2020

Released at: 15:59, 18/12/2017

Wood exports to EU to reach $1bn by 2020


Annual revenue to hit $1 billion mark on the back of EVFTA, according to Vietnam Timber and Forest Product Association.

by Ngoc Chi

Vietnam’s timber exports to the EU are forecast to reach $1 billion annually by 2020 after the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement (EVFTA) takes effect, according to Mr. Nguyen Ton Quyen, Vice President and General Secretary of the Vietnam Timber and Forest Product Association (Vifores).

He pointed out that timber trade between Vietnam and the EU accounts for 12-15 per cent of total wood and wooden products export turnover, averaging $650-700 million in value each year, and the EVFTA would have a positive impact on the industry.

Germany, France, the UK, Spain, and Italy are the main export markets of Vietnam’s timber products but with the EVFTA the market will be expanded, he added. The demand for wooden products in the EU is about $80-85 billion per year; much higher than the export turnover of Vietnamese products to the market.

Under the EVFTA, in addition to zero tariffs, Vietnamese companies can more easily purchase machinery and equipment and take on wood processing technology from the EU. However, the EU market is quite difficult, with strict technical specifications. While enterprises in the south of Vietnam understand what the EVFTA entails, most wood exporters in the north remain in the dark.

According to Vifores, with impressive growth in the first nine months of 2017, Vietnam’s wood sector is pinning high hopes on export revenue of $8 billion from wood and wooden products in 2017, or a 17 per cent increase year-on-year.

Other big markets, including South Korea and Japan, are taking measures to strictly control wood origin. The South Korean Government will require importers declare the legality and origin of wood and wooden products imported into the country from late 2017 and Japan will do likewise in March.

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