UK shows strong growth in US Hardwoods in 2005

Data for the first ten months of 2005 show that American hardwood exports grew significantly in the UK market. Sawn lumber volume to UK was up 9.4% and by 13.2% in value. Given some weaknesses in prices during the year this increase in average price is also indicative of a market that is buying higher quality, particularly in the joinery sector.

Worldwide exports of hardwood lumber from the USA rose in value by 1.8% in the period and by 5.3% across the whole EU (25). The UK also saw a rise in the import of solid hardwood flooring from $2.7million to $6.2million, although shipments of veneer fell by 25% to $.4million.

The Republic of Ireland has also turned in a strong performance so far with 15% increase in value to $19.7 million and an equivalent increase in volume. Together the UK and Ireland imported $85.8million, exactly equivalent to Spain – the largest market in Europe. If continued the UK and Ireland’s total would produce £103million for the full year.

American hardwood product exports worldwide, including Canada, in the first ten months of 2005 amounted to $2.4 billion – an increase of almost 3% on the same period for 2004. The EU (25) accounted for 27%. China accounted for 13% and Greater China (including shipments to Taiwan and Hong Kong) 18%. Southeast Asia amounts to 5% and thus that region now totals 23% when combined together.

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