The industry managed to purchase a total of 1.8 million cubic metres of wood from privately owned forests in July, a fifth less than last June or in July 2007. The aggregate purchase volume for January-July of this year is 12.2 million cubic metres, a little over half of the corresponding figure for the previous year. Timber sales usually quiet down during the summer holidays.
The industry is now in need of pulpwood in particular. The forest industry’s January-July pine pulpwood purchases came to 74% and birch pulpwood purchases to 82% of the volumes achieved in the corresponding period of 2007. Spruce pulpwood purchases were down by more than half.
Birch log purchases came to more than half of the amount achieved in January-July 2007, but purchases of pine and spruce logs were down by around two thirds. Weak demand for sawn timber on the global markets and the high price of wood are slowing down log sales.
Price of wood remains high
Stumpage prices remained unchanged from June. The average stumpage price of pine logs was €59 per cubic metre, while the average price of spruce logs was €60 per cubic metre and the average price of birch logs was €51 per cubic metre.
Pine and birch pulpwood stumpage prices were at €16-17 per cubic metre on average and the stumpage price of spruce pulpwood was €23 per cubic metre.
Compared to 2006, the last normal year for timber sales, prices have increased considerably. Softwood logs are 21–26%, birch logs 18%, pine and birch pulpwood 32–35% and spruce pulpwood 6% dearer than in July 2006.
One half of roundwood sales are purchases for delivery
The market situation for delivery sales, i.e. timber harvested by forest owners themselves, has been good throughout the beginning of the year and the share of these sales of all transactions has increased. Over one third of all procurements were purchases for delivery in January-July, when they accounted for only 15% of all sales in the corresponding period of 2007.
Anu Islander, Senior Advisor (Forestry), Finnish Forest Industries Federation, tel. +358 (0)9 132 6678, +358 (0)40 729 3678