China has imported 64% more European softwood lumber

With a total of 3.088 m m³, China imported 64% more European softwood lumber last year than in 2016.

Chinese Customs states, that the main supplier was Finland, as in the year before, where purchases grew by 84% to 1.683 m m³. In such a way Finland provides 54.5% of all Chinese imports of European softwood lumber, which is 5% more than in 2016. So, China has become the most important export market for the Finnish sawmill industry.

The development of imports from Sweden and Germany was below average with +31 % to 896,000 m³ and +15 % to 205,000 m³ respectively. On the other hand, Ukraine (+284% to 123,000 m³), Latvia (+124% to 94,000 m³) and Austria (+164% to 87,000 (33,000 m³) increased their imports greatly.

Chinese imports of sawn softwood achieved the figure of 24.996 m m³ last year, an increase of 18% comparing to 2016. During last ten years, China has increased its imports of European softwood lumber by over 800%, or around 22 m m³. The main reasons of the increase are the growing population and massive migration to the countryside, which has led to a significant increase in demand for housing, a trend that is still continuing. In recent years, the Chinese furniture industry has also recommended itself as an important buyer of sawn softwood.

Russia remained by far China’s most important supplier of softwood timber in 2017 with 14.124 m m³. Russia thus occupied 56.5% of total imports. Canada was the second largest supplier with 4.972 m m³ (-2%).

Information provided according to