The organisation said that its members have bought 35% fewer timber logs than during the same period in 2005, with sawmills estimating they have enough roundwood logs to last until midsummer.

UPM is to reduce sawing in Pori and Pietarsaari due to sawn timber overcapacity in Europe and high spruce log prices in Finland. According to the FFIF, it expects to see log shortages later this year. The company has also said it will join Metsaliitto Group in paying for logging residues which it believes will improve its competitiveness in the log market.

Metsaliitto is also cutting sawing in its Vilppula sawmill while, contrary to expectations, Stora Enso has announced it will not sell its Veitsiluoto sawmill but will start it up again.

Meanwhile, MTK, the national representative of private family forest owners, unusually urged forest owners to sell their timber in March in a bid to slow roundwood imports from Russia.

The FFIF said that in 2005, Russian imports hit an all time high of 21.5 million m3. And according to the Finnish Forest Research Institute, in January this year imports were 1.5 million m3 – a new monthly record.