Total U.S. hardwood lumber exports amounted to a value of over US$1.1 billion in the first half of 2016, up 6% on the same period last year.
Half of all U.S. hardwood lumber exports in the first six months were shipped to China, accounting for 51% share and up 16% in value on Jan – June 2015. Shipments to Vietnam increased a further 3% and remains 3rd largest export market after China and Canada.
The European market, of 28 countries including UK, was up this year by 13% in volume and 7.5% in value indicating some shift in buying. Some Southeast Asian countries eased but Thailand was steady and Vietnam continued its spectacular growth based on continuing success with its furniture export industry as well as strong demand at home. The total by value of exports to Southeast Asia was $110 million for the first half.
Top four species in Southeast Asia were White Oak, Tulipwood, Walnut and Red Oak, but in Vietnam Tulipwood now leads White Oak and these two are way ahead of all other species and still growing. In Vietnam also, Hickory showed strong growth from a small base with Ash and Red Oak also increasing as likely material for Vietnam’s development of wood flooring industries. As everywhere else, Walnut increased shipments to Vietnam and especially to China, up 42% this year.