Indonesian timber market moved into positive territory in April—latest GTI Report

16 May 2023

Timber products are loaded for export in North Sumatra, Indonesia. Photo: Ir. Herman Prayudi

Yokohama, Japan, 16 May 2023: The timber market is picking up in Indonesia, according to the April 2023 edition of the Global Timber Index (GTI) Report, which tracks the timber sector in seven pilot countries. The GTI was at 50.6% in Indonesia in April, which is above the threshold value (50%) for the first time since tracking began. A GTI value above 50% indicates growth in the sector.

The news is not so positive for the other pilot countries. The GTI was well below the 50% threshold in April in Brazil (39.6%), the Congo (26.3%), Gabon (42.4%) and Mexico (44.1%), with no sign of recovery. Malaysia saw an increase in the GTI of 8.5 percentage points in April, indicating a certain recovery in the timber market there, although the GTI is still well below the threshold, at 30.5%.

The number of new orders for timber and timber products in China has increased for three consecutive months, including April, causing both production and raw-material purchases to rise, with the GTI at 55.8%.

GTI pilot countries have taken a range of measures to promote the legal and sustainable timber trade and to revitalize the sector. For example, China and Gabon have pledged to deepen exchanges and cooperation in forestry. Malaysia’s Ministry of Plantation Industries and Commodities is developing a national biomass action plan covering plantations, agriculture, livestock, fisheries and forestry, with which it hopes to achieve a sustainable circular economy.

Enterprises involved in the GTI have also made positive suggestions. In Mexico, for example, enterprises have proposed that forestry companies and government departments use digital technologies to increase efficiency. Companies in the Congo are recommending that government departments coordinate better to boost timber demand and promote the development of timber markets in the Congo Basin.

The GTI has been developed as part of collaborative work between ITTO, the Macao Trade and Investment Promotion Institute and the Secretariat of the Global Green Supply Chains initiative, with about 160 enterprises and companies also participating. The aim is to facilitate business information and data exchange on the timber trade and promote collaboration among stakeholders in a stable, transparent and predictable business environment.

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