The value of EU imports of sawnwood increased 4.3% to Euro 3.2 billion last year, continuing the rising trend which began in 2013.
There was a particularly significant increase in the value of EU sawnwood imports from Africa in 2016 which offset a sharp decline in imports from South East Asia. EU imports of sawn wood from Russia and other CIS countries also continued to rise last year, helped along by the relative weakness of currencies in the region.
EU imports of panels (mainly plywood) increased 3.1% to Euro 2.52 billion in 2016 following an 11% in 2015. A significant increase in plywood imports from Russia offset declining imports from China and Latin America. There were also gains in EU plywood imports from Africa in 2016.
The long-term rise in EU imports of energy wood continued in 2016 to reach an all-time high of Euro 1.93 billion, up 9% compared to the previous year and nearly four times the value of a decade ago. EU imports of energy wood (now dominated by pellets) increased sharply from the U.S. and CIS region last year.