The total value of China’s wood products trade in 2016 fell 1.28% to US$142.2 billion. Of the total, the value of forest products exports dropped 0.72% to US$78.12 billion, the value of forest products imports declined 1.95% to US$64.09 billion.
The main imported softwood log species in 2016 were radiata pine (14.09 million cu.m, 41%), spruce and fir (5.55 million cu.m, 16%), Korean pine and Scots pine (4.64 million cu.m, 14%), larch (2.41 million cu.m, 7%) and Douglas fir (1.87 million cu.m, 6%).
The volume of Douglas fir, spruce and fir, radiata pine, Korean pine and Scots pine imports rose 17%, 16%, 15%, and 3%, but larch imports fell 5% year on year. The above-mentioned species accounted for 84% of total softwood log imports.
Main hardwood log imports
The main imported hardwood log species in 2016 were okoume (852,000 cu.m, 5.79%), oak (849,000 cu.m, 5.77%), redwood (800,000 cu.m, 5.4%), beech (600 000 cu.m, 4%), North America hardwood (430,000 cu.m, 3%) and Merbau (250,000 cu.m, 2%).
The volumes of North America hardwoods, merbau, okoume and redwood rose 38%, 36%, 33%, and 7% respectively, but beech and oak imports fell 16% and 5% year on year respectively.
Monthly change in China’s log imports
As can be seen in the graphic there was a fall in log deliveries in February and October.
The average monthly volume of softwood log imports in 2016 rose 13% to 283 million per cubic metres.
The average monthly volume of hardwood log imports rose 2% to 123 million cubic metres per cubic metres.
Softwood log imports were largest at 3.2 million cu.m in November and lowest in February at 1.9 million cu.m. A similar trend can be seen between hard log imports and tropical log imports.
Hardwood log imports and tropical log imports were largest at 1.53 million cu.m and 0.96 million cu.m respectively in March and lowest at 970, 000 cu.m and 580, 000 cu.m respectively in October 2016.