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May 9, 2017

Rising ocean freight costs modifying global lumber markets dynamics

A key development of the last months or so has been a rapid, unexpected rise in container rates from the Baltic Sea area (affecting a wide range of exporting countries, e.g., Finland, Sweden, northwestern Russia, the Baltic States, Germany and some in Eastern Europe). Container rates from Finland and Sweden have essentially doubled from less than US$1,000 to ~US$2,000. It is even worse from St. Petersburg: it appears that container rates may have tripled in the last six months (from US$20/m3 to almost $60/m3).

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