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Latest Africa Update
Not quite so Great Expectations The hardwood trade may have lost some momentum this year, but the outlook remains positive. And it’s unfazed by talk of an EUTR enforcement focus on the sector. Mike Jeffree reports.
On the waterfront Wijma UK is supplying tropical timber for projects both in and beside the water. Sally Spencer reports
VPA vision for legality Implementing EU FLEGT Voluntary Partnership Agreements is taking longer than hoped, but supplier countries signed up to the initiative have already made major progress on legality assurance. Mike Jeffree reports.
African adventure Daltons Wadkin provided technical support for TV presenter Nick Hewer’s charity mission to set up a joinery business in Sierra Leone.
Certification plus Scott Poynton of global not-for-profit organisation The Forest Trust says the tropical timber trade needs to do more to convince consumers of its environmental commitment
Suitable substitutes The timber trade needs to explore the potential of alternative tropical species, and the WWF has produced a new guide to help, reports James Horne of the environmental organisation’s Global Forest & Trade Network
All Bases covered Lionex says its latest diversification makes it even more of a one-stop hardwood shop. Mike Jeffree reports
Plywood rises to EUTR challenge The EU Timber Regulation may cause some disturbance for the tropical plywood trade, but long term it will benefit the sector and its image, according to three leading importers
Testing tropical times According to one supplier, OK is good enough for business in a tropical timber sector facing continuing tough market conditions and major new anti-illegal logging legislation. Mike Jeffree reports
Tropical sawn lumber makes major gains The market is strong for west and central African producers but whether the recent large rises in sawn timber prices can be sustained remains to be seen
West African exporters look forward with confidence Strong Indian demand, rising prices for South-east Asian lumber and supply restrictions in South America suggest a good year ahead for West African shippers
China and India buoy West African market Demand from China and India kept West African exporters busy during the European summer lull
Firm prices expected to hold to third quarter Demand and prices for West African logs and timber are steady and the period of stability is forecast to continue well into the year
Year expected to end on a more difficult note Although the next two months may be more difficult than the rest of the year, West African traders remain optimistic for the long term
Market refuses to holiday Prices are firm and, despite the summer slowdown, markets remain quite active
Hardwood lumber prices stabilise, but logs move up Higher log prices and tightening supply have injected new activity in West African markets
Little change expected during the first quarter Quiet demand is the least of problems for West African producers. They are more preoccupied with low log supply and difficulties in shipping
Belts continue to tighten as margins fail to improve The market for West African exporters is summed up as "dull", with low demand and even lower margins
No price rises expected through the summer West African markets are generally quiet and are expected to remain so for the next few months