Increased demand for American hardwoods in MENA

Over $43.22 million worth of hardwood lumber and veneer were exported into the MENA region during the first half of 2012, according to The American Hardwood Export Council (AHEC).

Exports of American hardwood lumber reached a value of USD31. 1 million and a volume of 44, 444 cubic metres, showing an increase of 20%.

These statistics have been taken from the latest data released by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) and account for direct shipments to the MENA region.

American hardwood veneers are shipped to the region from Europe to China while veneers are also produced in areas like Turkey from imported American hardwood logs.

“The USA data released shows that US hardwood exports to the MENA region reached a value of USD 13.05 million and a volume of 20, 514 cubic metres during the same period,” said Rodrick Wiles (pictured), AHEC director for Africa, Middle East, India and Oceania.

In terms of value, the UAE remains the chief destination in the region with exports rising 13% with a value of $6. 50 million.

However, as much as a third of the volume of American hardwood lumber shipped to the UAE is actually intended for markets in neighbouring GCC countries.

Other leading destinations for American hardwood lumber in the MEA region include Saudi Arabia, Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon and Qatar.