Japan Wood Products
Dollar Exchange Rates of
15th July 2008
Japan Yen 104.78
Reports From Japan
Tokyo traders see downturn in markets
The Japan Lumber Journal reported that traders have seen
a slowing market and no improvements in cargo
transactions. Since the start of the rainy season in Japan,
the outlook has been that markets are performing worse
than before, even though they were expected to recover in
the summer months.
Japan Lumber Reports said production of Southsea logs
rose after May and seems to have returned to normal. Log
suppliers in Malaysia have been bullish, since there is
local market demand. However, Japanese demand is still
sluggish. It is also expected that Sarawak will revise its
quota system, to give more flexibility for exports.
Shipments of Yunshan cedar items in China have been
suspended due to the recent earthquake in the region.
Plywood supply rises while housing starts fall
Japan Lumber Reports indicated that plywood imports
increased during May 2008, largely due to the sudden
appreciation of the Japanese yen. The volume of plywood
imports in May 2008 (Figure 1) rose 9.4.8% since April
2008, but showed a year-on-year decrease of 12%.
Nevertheless, demand was expected to stay low and
supply would stay tight, with prices rising.
For housing starts (Figure 2), figures for May 2008
showed a 6.5% fall from May 2007 levels.