The logs trade could be in for a big shake-up with a ban on Russian exports on the cards.
Russia exported 15m cu m of logs in 2020, which accounted for almost 12% of globally traded roundwood, according to a new report from Wood Resources International. Much of this trade may come to a halt next year when a new law proposed by Russia’s president will ban the exportation of softwood logs and high-value hardwood logs as of January 1, 2022. The Russian government is also considering new regulations aimed at reducing the exportation of green softwood lumber. This regulation is loosely planned to also commence in 2022.
The ban is expected to be enacted into law in the second quarter of this year. The biggest impact from the ban will be felt in China, which is a huge buyer of logs from Russia’s Far East region.
“China will probably look to source more sawlogs from other regions of the world, such as Oceania, Europe, and the US,” the report from Wood Resources International stated. Longer term it is expected that China will evolve from importation of roundwood to importation of lumber.