Export of wood and wood products reached nearly 16 billion USD

Market Information
icon date25/07/2023

The wood export market still faces many difficulties and declines, as evidenced by the fact that in the fourth quarter of 2022, it only reached 3.6 billion USD, down 3.4% compared to the same period in 2021.

Wood export market over time
According to the General Department of Forestry (Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development), in 2022, the export of timber and forest products is estimated at 16.928 billion USD, exceeding 3.8% of the plan and increasing by 6.1% compared to 2021.
In which, the export of wood and wood products reached 15.85 billion USD, up 7%. The main export markets for wood are: the United States, China, Japan, Korea and the EU with a total export value of nearly 15.5 billion USD, accounting for 91% of the export value of forest products.
However, according to the assessment, 2022 is a difficult year for many export industries in general and wood exports in particular. The main reason is that the inflation of many markets, especially in the US and EU, has caused the export volume to decrease.
In 2022, the export turnover of wood and wood products is also recording a strong increase, averaging over $1.3 billion per month. However, the increase did not last long before it began to decrease again, in early September 2022, only reaching an average of 1.1 billion USD/month.
As mentioned above, the main reason for this item’s decline is inflation. Many large markets such as the UK, EU, and the US are under pressure, causing the consumption demand of this group to slow down.
Therefore, the growth of wood and furniture exports has also slowed down but still reached $8.5 billion in 10 months, an increase of 3.5% compared to the same period in 2021. This figure has also helped the wood export industry in Vietnam more prosperous.
Besides the achieved results, the amount of wood exported in the last two months of the year was only 2.22 million, down more than 15% over the same period. In addition, many fast-growing products such as wood chips and pellets have also declined.
Challenges and solutions for wood export
According to the above data and updated market information, the export of wood and wood products is having a very deep decline, specifically, up to now, the growth rate is only over 1.1 billion USD, down 21% compared to the previous months. This is the deepest decline in the industry’s history.
Moreover, the US is the largest wood export market in Vietnam and is facing a shortage of goods, reducing consumption, so Vietnam’s products are also slowing down.
Besides, due to high rents, people’s need to move to new houses is also less. Less moving house also means less furniture will be purchased, so the use of wood is also a lot less.
In fact, in the business results reports until the end of the second quarter of a number of major furniture sellers in the US such as Wayfair, Ikea, Home Depot… all showed that inventories are higher than before. For example, Home Depot, inventory by the end of the second quarter increased 35% over the same period in 2021 to more than $26 billion.
In general, Vietnam needs to open many timber export markets with countries through FTAs. This will help our country perfect policies to cut unnecessary procedures, promote Vietnam’s exports to the FTA market.
Next, Vietnam needs to focus on improving the domestic supply of raw materials and input materials to promote the export of wooden furniture to the FTA markets.
According to experts, in order to increase wood production and export further, Vietnamese enterprises need to invest in technology, limit the export of wood chips, logs and raw materials, but instead focus strongly on processing refined products to meet market demand.
On the State side, it is necessary to have a special policy so that enterprises can receive land for afforestation and develop raw materials faster and more sustainably. Because planting material forests requires a lot of time, it is necessary to have a strategy to encourage long-term investment.
In the solution to prepare human resources, it is necessary to improve the qualifications and skills of workers, especially woodworkers, who are still heavy on traditional products and limited in modern product designs, which are not suitable for the culture, way of life and methods of many countries in the world.

Although exporting wood in Vietnam has many challenges, in general, these wood products are still preferred by many countries.