US Dollar Exchange Rates of
China Yuan 6.4814
Report from China
Rise in CIF prices for sawnwood imports
According to China Customs in the first half of 2021
sawnwood imports totalled 14.06 million cubic metres
valued at US$3.573 billion, down 17% in volume and
down 3% in value.
Of total sawnwood imports sawn softwood imports fell
24% to 9.66 million cubic metres, accounting for 69% of
the national total, down 6% over the same period of 2020.
Sawn hardwood imports rose 3% to 4.41 million cubic
metres because imports from the top sources Thailand,
USA, Russia and the Philippines rose 6%, 2%, 7% and
Of total sawn hardwood imports tropical sawnwood
imports were 2.84 million cubic metres valued at US$942
million, down 5% in volume and down 3% in value and
accounted for about 20% of all imports.
It is worth noting that the CIF prices for imported
sawnwood rose in the first half of 2021. CIF prices for
imported sawn softwood, sawn hardwood and tropical
sawnwood were US$254, US$196, US$381 and US$321
per cubic metre, up 17%, 15%, 7% and 2% respectively
over the same period of 2020.
Possible reasons for the increase aree because prices in
global timber markets have soared as a result of demand
recovery in advanced markets and because some
producing countries have reduced harvests. In addition, the
global logistics efficiency has been disrupted, container
turn-around is not smooth.
Another reason is because domestic demand in China
continues to rise and there is a ban on domestic harvesting
of natural forests. It is expected that the price of timber
will continue to rise in the near future.
Decline from major sawn softwood suppliers
In the first half of 2021, China¡¯s sawn softwood imports
came to 9.66 million cubic metres, down 24% and
accounted for 69% of the national sawnwood import total.
One reason for sharp drop in sawnwood imports was the
decline in shipments from the major suppliers.
Russia remained the main sawn softwood supplier in the
first half of 2021. 63% of China¡¯s sawn softwood was
imported from Russia. However, sawn softwood imports
from Russia fell 21% to 6.02 million cubic metres which
drove down the volume of overall imports.
In addition imports from Canada and Finland previously
major shippers to China fell 51% and 28% respectively. In
contrast, China¡¯s sawn softwood imports from both Brazil
and New Zealand surged and from Ukraine rose 16% in
the first half of 2021.
CIF prices for almost all sawn softwood suppliers
the first half of 2021. CIF prices for imported sawn
softwood from Canada, Sweden, Chile, Belarus, Finland,
Germany, Ukraine and Russia grew 41%, 36%, 27%, 26%,
24%, 23%, 19% and 13% respectively. However, CIF
prices for imported sawn softwood from New Zealand and
Brazil fell 59% and 42% respectively.
Substantial rise in China¡¯s sawn hardwood
China¡¯s sawn hardwood imports rose 3% to 4.41 million
cubic metres. Hardwood imports from the top sources,
Thailand, USA and Russia grew 6%, 2% and 7%
respectively but the biggest rise was in imports from the
Philippines which rose 98% year on year in the first half of
2021. This was mainly because of a 5% decline in average
price for hardwood imports from the Philippines.
In addition, China¡¯s sawn hardwood imports from
Romania, Germany and Malaysia rose 28%, 25% and 16%
respectively. Vietnam is no longer in the list of main
countries shipping sawn hardwood to China because most
of its sawn hardwood was utilised domestically
particularly by Chinese furniture factories in Vietnam.
China¡¯s sawn hardwood imports from Vietnam plummeted
49% year on year to 30,132 cubic metres in the first half of
CIF prices for sawn hardwood imports from USA,
Germany and Romania rose 27%, 12% and 9%
Decline in China¡¯s tropical sawnwood imports
Of total sawn hardwood imports, tropical sawnwood
imports in the first half of 2021 were 2.84 million cubic
metres valued at US$911 million, down 5% in volume and
3% in value and accounted for about 20% of the national
The average price for imported tropical sawnwood was
US$321 per cubic metre, up 2% over the same period of
Thailand remained the main supplier of tropical sawnwood
for China. Tropical sawnwood imports from Thailand in
the first half of 2021 were 1.77 million cubic metres
valued at US$479 million up 6% in both volume and in
The CIF price for China¡¯s tropical sawnwood imports
from Thailand fell 0.2% slightly to US$270 per cubic
metre in the first half of 2021.
In addition, the Philippines and Gabon were the second
and third largest suppliers of tropical sawnwood to China
in the first half of 2021 accounting for 10% and 9% of the
total tropical sawnwood imports respectively.
The Top 10 countries supplied 93% of China¡¯s tropical
sawnwood requirements in the first half of 2021 namely
Thailand (62%), Philippines (10%), Gabon (9%), Malaysia
(2.5%), Cameroon (2.0%), Indonesia (1.9%), Myanmar
(1.8%), PNG (1.2%), the Republic of Congo (1.14%) and
Decline in CIF prices for imported tropical
Data from China Customs shows CIF prices for most of
China¡¯s imported tropical sawn hardwood fell in the first
half of 2021. For PNG there was a 21% decline to US$598
per cubic metre Prices from the Philippines, Myanmar and
the Republic of Congo dropped around 5%. Of the top
suppliers of tropical sawn hardwood imports it was only
for Malaysia and Vietnam that CIF prices increased.
Battling the housing market
After many attempts to take the heat out of the property
market the Chinese government has increased efforts to
break the cycle of growth in the sector that has pushed
homeownership out of reach of most people. Mortgage
rates in a major city have been increased substantially and
the government has pledged to expand the stock of
subsidised rental housing.
The National Bureau of Statistics has reported national
real estate developments and sales in the first seven
months of 2021. Between January and July this year there
was a year-on-year increase of 12.7% in investment in real
estate with a 15% rise in investment in the residential
sector. In the same seven month period the area of
commercial building rose 21% year on year.
Operating conditions of Asian companies in
In July 2021 a trial construction of a GGSC-Gabon index
was undertaken. The results are reported below. The index
model and data collection will be further improved.
The GGSC-Gabon indices are compiled by the GGSC
Secretariat with the support of Forest Union of the Asian
Industry in Gabon (UFIAG). The index reflects the
operating conditions of Gabon¡¯s main Asian companies
with forest concessions.
In July the overall GGSC-Gabon index registered 51.8%,
indicating that the operating conditions of participating
companies has improved compared to the previous month.
Specifically, production and manufacturing
participating enterprises are active; demand was stable,
export orders have shown a good growth and the number
of orders received by enterprises has increased compared
with the previous month.
At the same time, the price of raw materials has increased
significantly and the delivery time has been extended. In
July most companies increased their inventory of raw
materials and finished products.
The GGSC-Gabon sub-indices are as follows:
The production index registered 58.3%, which is
above the critical value of 50% indicating a rise
in production month on month.
The new order index registered 50.0% reflect the
ability of companies granted to obtain orders is
almost same as last month.
The main raw material inventory
index registered 60.0%which is above the critical
value of 50%. This indicates that the raw material
inventory of companies increased in July from
The employment index registered 50.0%, same as
the previous month
The supplier delivery time
index registered 41.7% sharply lower than the
critical value of 50% indicating the delivery of
raw materials has slowed compared to a month