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Wood Market News From China (October)

Report from China

Shifts in China's Forest Policy

At a recent symposium on the Fast-growing and High-yielding Timber Plantation Program attended by heads and directors of national forestry departments Zhou shengxian, administrator of the State Forestry Administration, put forward the cornerstones of China's forest policy as summarised below:

Shifting from a " timber production-orientation " to one that focuses on ecological protection.

Shifting from a previous emphasis on logging natural forests to one of harvesting plantations.


Shifting from clearing forests for farming to converting low productivity farmland into forests.

Shifting to a society-orientation in forest management.

According to Mr Zhou, the new policies are the reflection of the process of development in China's forestry at present.

Jiangsu's Wood Industry

In the late seventies Jiangsu Province lacked forest resources and was considered as a purely timber consuming area but now, because of an intensive reforestation effort over the past 20 years the forest resource for the whole province has reached an estimated 51 million cubic metres.

At present there is nearly 5 million cubic metres of timber coming onto the market from provincial sources every year and this puts the province up with Fujian and Jiangxi provinces as a major timber producing provinces in Eastern China. Today there are 50 large and medium sized wood based panel enterprises in Jiangsu Province and some 3 million cubic metres of products are of poplar. The total output value of wood industry in the province amounts to 16 billion yuan and could reach 20 billion by the end of the current Five-year Plan period.

Last year the Province's furniture enterprises achieved sales of yuan 7 billion, a year-on-year increase of more than 20%. According to local statistics, the annual production capacity of Jiangsu's finished furniture and various decorative wood reached 50 billion yuan and 80 billion yuan respectively.

Various decorative wood lines produced in Fengxian County of the Province have secured 70% of the domestic market and over 65% of the national total. Export markets have developed well and the province earned more than US$10 million from exports last year. For the first half of this year exports total US$7 million.
Despite its growing local raw material base most wood products in Jiangsu Province are produced using mainly imported timber. For example, located in Northern Jiangsu Province, Fengxian County has become the largest consumer of imported Beech and Beech from more than 10 countries have been transported to this county via Qingdao, Guangzhou and Tianjin Ports.

Demand up in Hubei Province

Hubei Province has seen a steady growth in demand for wood products in the second half of the year but because the province has limited timber resources and because the Natural Forest Protection Program has reduced local harvests timber has been brought in from other areas such as Guangxi and Guizhou provinces and the use of imported timber has increased.

Sales of large sized construction timber have jumped recently and prices have risen. The price for Korean Pine logs ( length 6m, diameter 30cm plus ) have moved up to around yuan 1500 per cubic metre while the price for Larch, large-diameter Chinese Fir logs and Spruce and Fir logs were up to yuan 1000, yuan 1100 and yuan 1250 respectively. Prices for Masson pine ( length 4m, diameter 18-28 cm ) is about yuan 850-900.

According to local analysts, timber demand of Hubei Province has jumped as a result of the Mid-Western region development programme and because of the restoration works following recent floods in the area.

For information on China's forestry try:


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