The slowdown in EU imports of tropical timber products registered in the first quarter of 2017 continued into the second quarter.
Twelve monthly rolling average imports, which peaked at just below Euro196 million in June 2016, fell to Euro183 in June 2017. Most of the rise and subsequent slowdown in EU tropical imports was driven by sawn wood.
The decline in EU tropical wood imports this year is, in some ways, even more troubling than other larger downturns which have regularly afflicted the European trade in the last decade. The downward trend runs contrary to broader economic conditions across the continent which, while hardly buoyant, are more robust than at any previous time in the last five years.
The downturn comes at a time when EU tropical wood imports have barely recovered from the all-time low of 2013 and affects nearly all products and EU markets.