Ukraine intends to allow log exports by the end of 2021

With the passage of the Timber Market Law, it is expected that the largest log exporter of Ukraine will be a member of the European Union.

In an interview with the local media Interfax-Ukraine, Yuriy Bolokhovets, director of the National Forest Resources Agency of Ukraine recently revealed that the Ukrainian government will pass the timber market law at the end of this year to allow the export of unprocessed timber and sawn timber.

Bolokhovets stated that the entry into force of the timber market law is not expected to pose a major threat to Ukraine' s forest resources and timber companies. In addition, he pointed out that Ukrainian forestry practitioners are mostly engaged in low-value wood sawing work, encouraging companies to deepen processing and increase the added value of forest products. He said: “As the export ban on unprocessed timber will be lifted, Ukrainian timber manufacturers should develop diversified businesses and increase competitiveness.”

It is understood that 86% of Ukraine’ s forests are state-owned and managed by state forestry companies, while there are about 300 state-owned forestry companies in the country. Prior to this, there was a serious illegal logging phenomenon in Ukraine. For example, one of the state-owned forestry companies called Velyky Bychkiv allows IKEA supplier VGSM to illegally cut trees during periods when logging is not allowed. Such illegal logging activities have caused irreparable losses to Ukraine's forest resources to a certain extent.

However, the director said that although a large number of illegal logging of timber has occurred in Ukraine, that era has become a thing of the past. Now, the Ukrainian government will comprehensively strengthen legislation to protect local precious forest resources and promote log exports through effective protection measures.

It is worth mentioning that, according to the statistics of the Ukrainian Furniture Manufacturers Association, the total export value of furniture from Ukraine from January to August 2021 reached 559 million U.S. dollars, an increase of 62.5% over the same period last year. In addition, according to the statistics of the General Administration of Customs of Ukraine, the largest share of exported furniture products is wooden furniture, accounting for 23%.

It can be seen that the wooden furniture industry using logs as raw materials is becoming one of Ukraine’ s pillar industries. It is expected that the export of logs and related wooden furniture and other products will bring more foreign exchange income to Ukraine.

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