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HAWA: Domestic firms dominate local wood market

Le Hoang
Monday,  Nov 13,2017,18:41 (GMT+7)
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HAWA: Domestic firms dominate local wood market

Le Hoang

Domestic wood processing enterprises dominate the local market - PHOTO: HUNG LE

HCMC - Domestic enterprises have dominated Vietnam’s wooden furniture market in recent years with annual revenue of US$2 billion, said Huynh Van Hanh, vice chairman of the HCMC Handicraft and Wood Industry Association (HAWA).

At a press conference on the Vietnam International Furniture and Home Accessories Fair 2017 (VIFA Home 2017) last Friday, Hanh said Vietnam annually spends only US$68 million importing wooden products as reported by the General Department of Vietnam Customs. That is to say most wooden products on the domestic market are home-made.

Local firms have made good use of their advantages and understood consumers’ demand. They have invested heavily in advanced machinery and techniques to improve their products’ quality and designs, and offered good after-sale services and other services to satisfy customers.

However, local wood processing companies are facing numerous challenges. Duties on wood imports have been cut to zero due to the trade pact between China and ASEAN, opening the market for fierce competition between imported and local products, said Hanh.

In addition, Vietnam has to spend a large amount of money importing wood materials, thus increasing production costs and prices of locally processed products.

In order to enhance the competitiveness of domestic products, HAWA advised enterprises to invest in new machines and technological equipment, and study the market carefully to launch appropriate products. Enterprises were also urged to use wood from replanted forests rather than natural ones and use local materials to reduce imports.

HAWA also said export of wood and wooden products in the first nine months of the years was strong. According to the General Department of Vietnam Customs, wooden product exports in January-September reached US$5.55 billion, up 11.3% year-on-year.

Foreign-invested enterprises exported US$2.63 billion worth of wooden products in the period, accounting for 47.4% of the total export turnover.

VIFA Home 2017, jointly held by Lien Minh Wood Handicrafts JSC and HAWA, will take place from November 23 to 26 at Phu Tho Indoor Stadium in HCMC.

Hanh said as many as 87 enterprises with 487 booths have put their names down to participate in the expo. Of which, 31% of them are trading in wood processing, 33% in interior decoration, 11% in handicraft and the remaining in supporting industries.

Hanh said HAWA would take measures to prevent producers from using illegal timber from participating in those fairs organized by the association. Enterprises that want to take part in HAWA’s expos must prove the origin of their products’ materials.

In May, the Vietnam Timber and Forest Product Association (Vifores) coordinated with some agencies to hold a seminar on “Vietnamese wood industry says no to illegal timber”. Accordingly, Vietnamese associations and enterprises active in the wood processing and trading sector, including those in traditional craft villages, had to sign a commitment not to use illegal timber to ensure sustainable development for the industry.

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