Timber Trouble: Finland’s Softwood Lumber Plummets 34% in Jan.-May 2023

"Finland's Forest Industry Exports Reach EUR 5.30 Billion in January-May, Paperboard Dominates with 26% Share"

In the first five months of this year, Finland’s forest industry products recorded a total export value of EUR 5.30 billion. Notably, paperboard accounted for 26% of this value, while pulp and paper constituted less than a quarter and 21% respectively. Softwood lumber made up 15% of the export value, with plywood trailing at 5%.

Examining the export price of softwood lumber in May, it stood at EUR 242 per cubic metre. Throughout the year, this price experienced a slight upward trend, although it remained 18% lower in real terms compared to the average price of the previous year. Similarly, the export price of plywood in May was EUR 766 per cubic metre.

These figures shed light on the performance of Finland’s forest industry products and provide insights into the market dynamics. The export value of EUR 5.30 billion indicates a strong demand for these products on the international stage. However, it is worth noting the varying shares of different product categories within this value.

Paperboard emerges as the dominant product category, accounting for a significant 26% share. This highlights the continued popularity and importance of paperboard in various industries, such as packaging and printing. Meanwhile, pulp and paper together make up less than a quarter of the export value, suggesting a slightly lower demand for these products compared to paperboard.

Softwood lumber and plywood, with shares of 15% and 5% respectively, demonstrate their contribution to Finland’s forest industry exports. Softwood lumber, in particular, has seen a steady rise in export price since the beginning of the year. However, it is essential to consider the real terms, as the current price remains 18% lower than the average price of the previous year. This decline may reflect market dynamics or other factors influencing pricing.

The export price of plywood, on the other hand, stood at EUR 766 per cubic metre in May. While no comparison to the previous year’s average price is provided, this figure indicates a significant value for this particular product. Plywood’s 5% share in the export value further emphasizes its contribution to Finland’s forest industry.

Overall, Finland’s forest industry products continue to hold a strong position in international markets. The export value of EUR 5.30 billion reflects the global demand for these products, with paperboard leading the way. However, the varying shares of different product categories highlight the diverse nature of the industry and the importance of each segment. The rise in softwood lumber’s export price, albeit lower than the previous year’s average, demonstrates its ongoing significance. Similarly, plywood’s export price of EUR 766 per cubic metre showcases its value in the market.

As the year progresses, it will be intriguing to monitor any further developments in Finland’s forest industry exports. Factors such as market trends, demand fluctuations, and global economic conditions may influence the performance of these products. Nonetheless, the forest industry remains a vital sector for Finland, contributing significantly to its economy and international trade.

John O Mahony

John O Mahony

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