December 05, 2022
Increasing demand for Southeast Asian tropical hardwood products
The Democratic Republic of Congo intends to ban the export of logs, according to a recent statement by their environment minister. It needs to be clarified when this will be implemented. Still, the rate of deforestation in the Congo Basin Forest is alarming, and it seems that, finally, some action is being taken. This is in line with a previous decision by the six CEMAC countries (Cameroon, Congo, Gabon, Chad, CAR, and Equatorial Guinea) to ban the log export by January 2023; however, these bans still need to be confirmed, too. China, Vietnam, and the European Union are the largest markets for such logs, and they will have to look for other resources. Countries such as Papua New Guinea and the Solomon Islands still export huge log volumes to China and Vietnam.
Another recent and important event is that various African species Afzelia (Doussie), Khaya, and Padouk, have been added to the CITES Appendix II list and require an export permit as of February 1, 2023. The same applies to the South American species Cumaru and Ipe, where the deadline is December 2023.
The above developments increase the demand for Southeast Asian tropical hardwood products from species such as Kapur, Meranti, Red & Yellow Balau (Bangkirai), and Keruing. One can expect prices to increase, especially now that sea freight rates have dropped to almost pre-Covid levels.