Central/West Africa: Log demand remains steady

Source:
ITTO's Tropical Timber Market Report
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For the period under review, some price changes were experienced from September. Prices firmed as a result of good demand from China, India and Vietnam. Iroko logs are still in good demand and sawnwood prices also gained due to increased demand from European and Asian buyers. Sapele log prices are a little higher and demand for niove logs for the Indian market remains steady lifting prices. Okoumé log prices also inched up, even though supply from Equatorial Guinea and Congo Brazzaville is now sufficient to meet demand in consumer countries, says an analyst.

Okoumé logs from Congo Brazzaville have been used to replace what was sourced from Gabon before the log export ban. However, there remains a possibility that Congo Brazzaville may at some point revert to the limits on log exports that were in force up to the early months of this year, says an analyst.
In Cameroon log exports are continuing and due to the high demand there are shortages of azobe and ayous logs for domestic processing industries.

European sawnwood demand still sluggish
Sawnwood demand has remained steady except from Continental Europe where most buyers are unsure about business prospects over the coming winter months. The market in Italy is more active with demand for ayous sawnwood but otherwise European trade is reportedly dull.
Demand from Middle East countries is moderate and African exporters have been making headway in competition against Malaysian exporters suffering from higher ocean freight costs and an appreciating Ringgit.

Gabon eyes employment through processing industry
Major industries in Gabon now have begun to adapt to the log export ban and are starting to seek new processing opportunities. Due to reduced harvest volumes, the sector currently employs fewer people.
Since processing is relatively more labour intensive, it is hoped that there will be more job opportunities as mills increase their capacities and outputs.

Central/West Africa
West Africa logs, FOB € per m³
Asian market
LM
B
BC/C
Acajou/ Khaya/N'Gollon
205
205
153 
Ayous/Obéché/Wawa
190
190
145
Azobe & Ekki
205
205
122
Belli
210
210
-
Bibolo/Dibétou
145
130

Bubinga
600
530
390
Iroko
260
245
190
Okoume (60% CI, 40% CE, 20% CS)
230
-
-
Moabi
275
275
190
Movingui
180
150
140
Niove
140
140
-
Okan
320
320
-
Padouk
370
340
235
Sapele
245
245
170
Sipo/Utile
270
250
200
Tali
270
270
114 


West Africa sawnwood, FOB
€ per m³
Ayous FAS GMS
300
Okoumé FAS GMS
370
FAS. fixed sizes
340
Std/Btr GMS
275
Sipo FAS GMS
470
FAS fixed sizes 320
FAS scantlings
490
Padouk FAS GMS
550
FAS scantlings
550
Strips
300
Sapele FAS Spanish sizes
390
FAS scantlings
460
Iroko FAS GMS
510
Scantlings
530
Strips
350
Khaya FAS GMS
380
FAS fixed
390
Maobi FAS GMS
495
Scantlings
440
Movingui FAS GMS
345
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