US to remain biggest market for Vietnam wood industry

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The US will be the major export market for Vietnam's wood products this year too, the Ho Chi Minh City Handicraft and Wood Industry Association has said.

It is because the US is a stable market, news website thoibaokinhtesaigon quoted Huynh Van Hanh, deputy chairman of the association, as saying on March 2.

Exports to the US rose 24.4 percent last year.

The EU, the second largest importer last year, is likely to buy less this year, Hanh said, explaining that the grouping henceforth requires exporters to clearly prove that the timber was legally sourced.

Exports to the EU last year were worth US$654 million, a 7.2 percent rise over 2011.

The industry in Vietnam now has an advantage over its counterparts in other countries in the region, the association said. 

The Chinese government has stopped providing financial support for the sector while facilities and production lines in countries like Myanmar, Malaysia, and Indonesia remain poor, it explained.

Vietnam's wood industry exports were worth $4.67 billion last year, an 18 percent rise from 2011.

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