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Towards greater transparency in the tropical timber markets

The ITTO Tropical Timber Market (TTM) Report, an output of the ITTO Market Information Service (MIS), is published in English every two weeks with the aim of improving transparency in the international tropical timber market. The TTM provides market trends and trade news from around the world, as well as indicative prices for over 400 tropical timber and added-value products.



1-15 February 2016

Top story

Japan’s furniture import trends 

Production and sales from Japan’s domestic wooden furniture manufacturers have been shrinking for more than a decade. Most of the decline is due to competition from imports.
It has been estimated that imports of bedroom, kitchen and dining-room furniture accounted for around 60% of the market in 2015.
The growth in imports from China and Southeast Asian countries continues to hollow out domestic wooden furniture manufacturing.

Also in this issue

  • No interest in small diameter okoume logs
  • First FSC teak from Ghana
  • EU says annul recent exclusions to allow FLEGT licensing scheme to go ahead
  • Indian plywood industry sourcing alternatives to gurjan
  • Hollowing out of Japan’s furniture manufacturing base
  • South Korea imposes anti-dumping duty on Chinese plywood
  • Contrasting 2015 plywood market trends amongst EU member states       

Data snapshot

Established demand patterns for wooden furniture upended in Japan

Traditional Japanese bridal chest made of domestic hardwood. Although now not popular with young Japanese couples  such chests are still made as there is a growing demand overseas

Purchases of wooden chests of drawers, a main item in the traditional Japanese “bridal furniture set”, have dropped dramatically over the past 15 years. In the past, the bridal market was a main driver of growth in Japan’s furniture sector. It was usual for the bride’s family to buy a three-piece furniture set.
Over time, the dressing-table component of the bridal set has been replaced by western-style chests of drawers. This, combined with the decline in the number of marriages, has upended the established demand patterns for wooden furniture in Japan.


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