China’s timber demand will slow in the second half of 2019
Global cork trade declined by *% in 2019 due to sharp fluctuations in US timber prices and a slowdown in Chinese timber demand in the second half of 2019, the first decline in five years. In the United States, China, the United Kingdom, and Japan, the four largest timber importers imported less wood in 2019 than in the previous year, mainly due to weak economic prospects and lower housing construction starts.
Sustained uncertainties about China’s economic future are all contributing factors to the slowdown in timber demand at the end of 2019.
Russia’s share of China’s total imports has risen from *% in the fourth quarter of 2018 to *% in the fourth quarter of 2019, as the sawmill industry in Siberia and the Far East continues to expand and timber prices are quite competitive. Imports from Finland and Sweden fell sharply last year.