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    European furniture sector calls for harmonised recovery DETAY
    European furniture sector calls for harmonised recovery

    The European furniture sector has expressed its concerns over the lack of a harmonised response across the EU to the coronavirus pandemic, reports the European Furniture Industries Confederation (EFIC). The confederation points out that alongside the challenges posed by the pandemic, the furniture and bedding industries also face reduced availability of raw materials, a considerable increase of raw material prices, and logistical bottlenecks, and that the disparate responses of EU member states in terms of lockdowns, border closures and slow vaccination programmes have exacerbated the production and delivery complications, as well as harming furniture sales. The sector therefore welcomed the Commission’s communication on 17th March outlining a co-ordinated reopening in the Member States, as well as the EU leaders' agreement of 25th March for preparations towards a common approach to the gradual lifting of restrictions, with the aim of ensuring a co-ordinated effort when the epidemiological situation allows, as well as putting an emphasis on the unhindered flow of goods within the single market.  The European furniture and bedding industry generates a yearly turnover of €96b and employs around one million workers in 120,000 enterprises across the EU, while the furniture retail sector there represents more than 100,000 companies. In 2020, furniture production across the EU-27 ped by -7.4% YoY, as a general reduction of orders, imports, exports and turnover was reported throughout the year, with significant differences between the different market segments (home furnishings remained in high demand compared to contract furniture), while the furniture retail sector also suffered a noticeable in sales, says EFIC.  The European furniture sector has asked the EU institutions and Member States' authorities to ensure: enhanced harmonisation with regard to a swift reopening; a swifter vaccine roll-out; an open single market, with no closed borders between the EU Member States, and a free movement of goods and services; and clear rules for the sector regarding the planning and organisation of European and international trade fairs.

    Continued strong US housing construction and home sales push lumber prices higher DETAY
    Continued strong US housing construction and home sales push lumber prices higher

    As the usual construction season starts to come on in Canada and the US, demand for softwood lumber remains very hot. While customers are reluctant to pay these way-beyond record-breaking prices, there is little they can do to avoid buying as ongoing building projects must be completed. Builders and contractors are anxious to capitalize on their investments, then assess how they will proceed in the future, according to the Madison’s Lumber Reporter. At time of writing, demand for real estate remains extremely high, so those who paid high prices for lumber are simply passing on those costs to the end-user; the home buyer. While much is being written about what is the ratio of increased building material prices in rising home prices, in the end the real estate customer is not concerned. Folks looking to buy a home are increasing their bids without blinking; to them whether the price is up nominally due to the cost of materials or due to a very competitive housing market makes no difference. The inventory of new homes for sale keeps ping. To the real estate customer, these increasing lumber prices don’t matter. The selling Western S-P-F in the US retained the strong sense of desperation traders have gotten used to in recent weeks and months. Lumber futures yo-yoed up and down seemingly at a whim, throwing players for a loop as they tried to decide on their next move. Producers reported virtually zero availability any earlier than mid-May even after triple-digit price hikes. Demand for Western S-P-F got more frenzied in the week ending April 23, according to producers in Western Canada. Experienced players expounded that they’ve never seen anything like it. Canadian sawmills were completely sold out to the week of May 17th and showed only limited availability for May 24th. Buyers who held off in hopes of some form of correction were cursing that decision now as inventories were leaner and prices significantly higher. Pushing still higher than anyone could ever have conceived of, in the week ending April 23, 2021 the wholesaler price of benchmark softwood lumber commodity item Western S-P-F KD 2x4 #2&Btr was US$1,330 mfbm. This is up by +$120, or +9%, from the previous week. That week’s price is up by +$290, or +28%, from one month ago when it was $1,040. “Another crazy week proceeded in Southern Yellow Pine as buyers desperately tried to find coverage. Narrows were in especially short supply, but overall availability remained scant according to traders. Buyers in the West couldn’t find any product available,” reports Madison’s Lumber Reporter.   Compared to the price one-year-ago, when it was US$336 mfbm, for the week ending April 23, 2021, the price of Western S-P-F KD 2x4 was up by +$994, or +296%.

    Harrogate to host this years Manchester Furniture Show DETAY
    Harrogate to host this years Manchester Furniture Show

    Exhibition organiser Clarion Events reports that the Manchester Furniture Show will go ahead this year, but will take place in Harrogate, not Manchester Central. The show will be hosted at the Harrogate Convention Centre (HCC) and the DoubleTree by Hilton Harrogate from 18th-21st July, co-located with the Home & Gift Buyers’ Festival, which celebrates its 60th anniversary this year. Due to undisclosed reasons, the decision was made go ahead with the event in the new location this year, giving exhibitors an opportunity to do business with over 10,000 additional buyers, and giving buyers the chance to explore over 650 brands. Portfolio director at Clarion Events, Zoë Bonser, says: “We are delighted that we are able to run the furniture industry’s first and largest in-person event for buyers and suppliers to unite and do business in over a year. After such uncertainty, we are positive that this is the opportunity the industry has been waiting for, and with 87% of buyers saying they would attend the physical show in July, we are expecting a strong return. “These events bring together over 100 years’ trade show experience, and, combined with the launch of our new digital platform, Reveal, we cannot wait to share our fully integrated live and digital offering for the first time with the retail industry’s largest gathering. We are excited to share more information about Reveal very soon.” Clarion Events has confirmed that the show will have its own entrances with a separate registration process, and will be situated across four halls. Buyers will be invited as normal, and exhibitors will also benefit from the specialist interiors buyers that Home & Gift Buyers’ Festival attracts. With safety remaining paramount, Abigail Quesnel, senior operations manager, adds: “Safety is our priority, and we are working closely with the Association of Event Organisers (AEO), which is liaising with the Government directly on live event guidelines to ensure the best possible experience for exhibitors and visitors alike.” Zoë concludes: “We are in the process of contacting all Manchester Furniture Show exhibitors, and visitors can expect to see more communications about this exciting new development over the coming days and weeks. I would like to take this opportunity to thank all of our customers and stakeholders for their patience and understanding over the last 12 months, and to say that we cannot wait to see you all in person in July for retail’s highly anticipated return to live B2B trade shows.” Pictured: Manchester Furntiure Show in its traditional setting, Manchester Central, in 2018

    Turkeys furniture and timber exports to Turkmenistan have declined. DETAY
    Turkeys furniture and timber exports to Turkmenistan have declined.

    The Turkish Ministry of Commerce told Trend on April 22 that Turkey's furniture and timber exports to Turkmenistan fell by 8.4 percent to $ 9.6 million in January-March 2021, compared to the same period last year. Turkish furniture and timber exports to Turkmenistan also decreased by 1.4 percent to 4.9 million dollars in March 2021 compared to the same month of 2020. In the January-March 2021 period, the total amount of Turkish furniture and timber exports increased by 14.5 percent compared to the same period of the previous year and reached 1.5 billion dollars. Turkey exported $ 583.04 million worth of furniture and timber in March 2021. This figure is 36.6 percent more than in March 2020. Turkey exports of these products reached 5.7 billion dollars in the last 12 months (from March 2020 to March 2021).

    Tangent announces patent for wood-grain polymer lumber DETAY
    Tangent announces patent for wood-grain polymer lumber

    Tangent announced the receipt of U.S. Patent No. 10,981,350 for its wood-grain polymer lumber, which Tangent brought to the market in 2016. This utility patent covers internal woodgraining for polymer lumber and sheet products sold in the US. This new patent brings Tangent's total up to five, including others for the wood-grained appearance of its polymer lumber. "A driving force at Tangent is innovation," said Guy De Feo, CEO of Tangent Technologies. "We've engineered materials that use recycled plastics, are durable and low maintenance, and look great. As the leading manufacturer of fabrication materials, we are excited to have been awarded this utility patent for our innovative material". Tangent's woodgrain dimensional lumber offers manufacturers a more sustainable material that also provides endless design opportunities. The plastic lumber looks like traditional lumber, is available in seven woodgrain colors, industry leading finishes and is primarily sourced from post-consumer and post-industrial recycled HDPE. Woodgrain dimensional lumber is used in outdoor residential and commercial applications, from outdoor furniture and fixtures to playgrounds and park benches. Manufacturers get the look and style of wood but in a durable, easy-to-clean, color stable, environmentally friendly material. Tangent is a leading supplier of durable recycled plastic lumber products.

    LIGNA postponed again, now set for May 2023 DETAY
    LIGNA postponed again, now set for May 2023

    The next regular LIGNA will be held from May 15 to 19, 2023. The event scheduled for this year from September 27 to October 1 will not take place in this event cycle. Due to the continuing high level of infection worldwide in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic, Deutsche Messe, together with the VDMA Woodworking Machinery, has taken the decision to cancel the world's leading trade show for woodworking and wood processing plant, machinery and tools. "Uncertainties in the wake of the pandemic still remain very high worldwide. In close consultation with the VDMA, we have therefore decided to cancel LIGNA as a physical event in 2021", says Dr. Jochen Köckler, Chairman of the Managing Board of Deutsche Messe AG. "In order to offer the industry a platform for innovations, knowledge exchange and networking, natively we will set up a digital networking and platform that will be launched at the end of September. We are also planning the Rosenheim LIGNA.Conference in early summer 2022." "The decision to cancel LIGNA in this event cycle was very difficult for all of us. Together with our partner Deutsche Messe and together with the exhibitors, the companies in the woodworking and wood processing industry, we fought to hold LIGNA as the world's most important industry platform this year. Commitment from the market has been exceptionally high right up to the end - even in these uncertain times. This has given us all a lot of tailwind in recent weeks. At LIGNA, we have to take into account that entire machine parks are designed, set up and presented in live operation with a long lead time and a great deal of effort. This requires many months of trade show planning. This is the reason, why we have now been forced to make a decision on holding LIGNA in the fall in order to give our customers the necessary planning security. Another postponement makes no sense in view of the innovation cycles of the companies and in view of the next LIGNA, which will take place again in May 2023. Unfortunately, there is no native to the cancellation this year", adds Dr. Bernhard Dirr, Managing Director of VDMA Woodworking Machinery. LIGNA is the world's leading trade fair for woodworking and wood processing plant, machinery and tools.

    Anti-dumping duty recommended for fibre boards from Vietnam, Malaysia, Thailand and Indonesia DETAY
    Anti-dumping duty recommended for fibre boards from Vietnam, Malaysia, Thailand and Indonesia

    The Directorate General of Trade Remedies (DGTR) has recommended definitive anti-dumping duty on ‘Plain Medium Density Fibre Board’ (thickness less than 6 mm) imported from Vietnam, Malaysia, Thailand and Indonesia. Greenply Industries/ Greenpanel Industries and Century Plyboards (India) Ltd had filed the petition seeking anti-dumping probe on such fibre boards from these countries. Plain MDF Board is a composite wood product made out of wood waste fibres glued together with urea formaldehyde resin or melamine resin by applying heat and pressure. It is widely used for partitions, modular furniture and cabinets due to its smooth and uniform finish. The current investigations does not cover within its scope laminated MDF Board. The anti-dumping duty recommended depends on the landed value and is the difference between landed value and specified rates ($ 255.35 per CBM for Vietnam; $258.42 per CBM for Malaysia; $258.42 per CBM for Thailand; and $258.42 for Indonesia).   The definitive anti dumping duty – if imposed by the revenue department – will be valid for five years.      

    Trade Minister calls for expansion of furniture export market DETAY
    Trade Minister calls for expansion of furniture export market

    The presence of PT Integra (Indocabinet​)​​​​​​ is very important since it is one of the largest furniture manufacturers in Indonesia and most of its products are exported Sidoarjo, E Java (ANTARA) - Trade Minister Muhammad Lutfi has urged Indonesian furniture producers to expand their export market, particularly amid the COVID-19 pandemic.  "The presence of PT Integra (Indocabinet​)​​​​​​ is very important since it is one of the largest furniture manufacturers in Indonesia and most of its products are exported," he said while seeing off a shipment containing PT Integra Indocabinet's furniture exports to the United States in Sidoarjo, East Java on Tuesday. The minister promised to help companies in resolving problems to increase exports. In addition to the US, other export markets for Indonesian furniture, such as China, are still widely open, he pointed out. "This is what we call value change. We improve the system to make business costs cheaper, easier, and better. I will appoint a representative who will be responsible for PT Integra to ensure its exports in larger quantities," he said. He refuted claims that it is more difficult to get raw materials in Indonesia than in Vietnam. In fact, the US market for Indonesian furniture has expanded after the US imposed sanctions on Vietnam, which is the largest furniture exporter in Southeast Asia, he stated. "Vietnam has received a sanction from the US for obtaining wood raw material illegally," he stated. Meanwhile, PT. Integra Indocabinet CEO Halim Rusli said the COVID-19 pandemic has made it difficult for furniture manufacturers to find markets and many of them have gone bankrupt.   "Every month, PT. Integra Indocabinet. Tbk exports one thousand containers of furniture, with the US as the main export market. More than 85 percent of our furniture production is to meet foreign orders. On average, our exports reach Rp4 trillion per year," he added.

    Exhibitors, attendees call Vegas event a ‘win DETAY
    Exhibitors, attendees call Vegas event a ‘win

    LAS VEGAS — One of the oldest furniture market cliches was repeated often at the recent Las Vegas Market, and with good reason. No, attendance wasn’t great — roughly 40% of pre-pandemic levels — but it was substantially better than the last Las Vegas market in August and substantially better than many exhibitors expected. And yes, those who did go to the market were there to buy. There were no tire kickers. “Those who came were not here for the frequent flyer miles,” quipped John DeFalco, executive vice president of sales and marketing at full-line furniture resource Primo International. DeFalco and other exhibitors said buyers ventured to Las Vegas simply because they needed inventory. And with supply chains choked by everything from foam allocations to shortages of ocean shipping containers, exhibitors who had inventory ready to ship had the upper hand. “We’re selling everything we can,” said Mike Genrich, senior vice president of sales and marketing at Furniture of America. “I wasn’t expecting us to be very busy, but we had a constant flow of traffic.” ‘Back-to-business’ market Most exhibitors said the majority of buyers were from Western and Southwestern states. However, officials with market owner International Market Centers said buyers from all 50 states showed up, and there was even a handful of international buyers. “This felt more like a back-to-business market,” said Dorothy Belshaw, chief marketing and customer officer at IMC. “Our buyer attendance had tripled the (August 2020 market) by the end of the second day.” IMC CEO Bob Maricich said momentum began to build during the two weeks leading up to market and added he was amazed at the number of buyers who decided to attend only a day or two before the show began. “There’s just an unprecedented desire to get in front of people face-to-face,” he said. “There was almost an exuberance of being back. I heard many people say the last thing they needed was another Zoom meeting.” Maricich said the market may provide a blueprint on how to run trade shows in other parts of the country, noting the extensive safety protocols — notably a mask-wearing requirement anywhere on the World Market Center campus — appeared to make attendees feel comfortable about being there. “We may well be the first significant trade show in the country. We’re certainly the first in Las Vegas,” he said, noting the extensive coverage the show received from the city’s television stations and newspapers. Exhibitors who did open their doors (roughly 85% were open vs. less than 50% last August) indicated they were happy with their decision, and the relatively few who has extensive new product rollouts were especially pleased. “People are always going to need to see new product if they want to build up their sales, and I think that’s one of the reasons we were so busy,” said Caroline Hipple, president of custom upholstery producer Norwalk, whose introductions included everything from a chair lineup with performance leather covers to an expansion of its licensed Kim Salmela collection. “We haven’t stood still during the pandemic.” Bedding performs well Executives at specialty bedding producers MLily and Ghostbed were very pleased with the reception to their respective product launches, as was upper-end specialist Shifman Mattress and West Coast-based bedding producer E.S. Kluft & Co., who rolled out new product for all three of its brands: Kluft, Aireloom and Marshall Mattress. “The business is still very strong, … and we’ve had open house tours at our factories for those who didn’t come to market,” said Magali Castillo, vice president of marketing at E.S. Kluft. “But we still had 25 to 30 good appointments here, so we’re pretty happy with the results.” Stephen Chen, president of MLily USA, was especially pleased with the reception to the company’s new kids bedding line, and he said the company landed a number of key product placements at market. “We had a good, continuous flow of customers,” said Chen. “They were here looking for product. Now that (consumers) are starting to get out more, our dealers know they are going to need more.” Ghostbed, heretofore an online-only bedding resource, enjoyed success with its first product line for brick-and-mortar retailers. Backed by the company’s $50 million annual advertising and marketing effort, the company said the new products will begin showing up on retail floors shortly. “We had some great appointments with key retailers who are interested in becoming part of our distribution network,” said Alan Hirschhorn, executive vice president of sales. “I still think people like to get out and shop, and they’re ready because we’ve all been home way too long.” Other bedding producers reporting good traffic flow included Southerland, who saw continuing success with a hybrid mattress line launched earlier this year, and the Specialty Sleep Assn., whose expansive space had five booths that were staffed by vendors and nine other booths whose occupants set up displays but opted to give visiting buyers a virtual tour. The Las Vegas winter market is typically the scene of dozens of bedding industry product launches, but with the “winter” market being postponed until April, many producers opted to unveil products long before the show began. An eye for all categories On the case goods front, exhibitors said dining room was an especially popular category, as was entertainment furniture and accent pieces such as decorative tables. In addition, bedroom was seeing a bit of a revival at resources such as AICO and Legends Furniture. “We’re writing some good orders, and we’re glad we’re here,” said David Koehler, vice president of sales at AICO. “We expect business to continue to be strong throughout the year because people are starting to see a light at the end of the (pandemic) tunnel.” Tim Donk, director of marketing and business development at Legends, said buyers especially liked the company’s lineup of domestically product entertainment centers, in which each style is available in 60- and 80-inch sizes. “We had more buyers than we expected. Even a few were on our showroom on Saturday (the day before the market officially opened),” Donk said. “It was mostly West Coast customers, but we saw people from other parts of the country, too.” Dining room was a popular category for resources such as Coast To Coast Accents, while outdoor furniture sales continued to be brisk late into the normal selling season at resources such as Zuo Modern. “It’s the hottest category we have right now,” Zuo CEO Luis Ruesga said of outdoor furniture. “The outdoor (selling) season started late last year and has never ended.” David MacIntosh, chief administrative officer at Coast To Coast, said casual dining continues to be a top seller, despite supply chain woes that have beset the company, along with everybody else in the home furnishings industry. “We had good traffic throughout the show, predominately West Coast people,” he said. Executives at upholstery and accent furniture resources Modway and Moe’s Home Collection said their showrooms had brisk traffic, especially from buyers from small and mid-sized stores who were in immediate need of inventory. “Although our upholstery is doing really well, all our categories remain strong,” said Seth King, vice president of sales at Moe’s. “Most of our customers told us they hadn’t been to a market in about a year, so they were pretty happy with what they saw.” Justin Lipschik, vice president of operations and sales at Modway, said the company’s modular sofas and armchairs were especially popular at market because most are available in multiple color options. But like many other exhibitors, he said business across all categories remains brisk and there are no signs of a slowdown. “Even though there are not as many people here (as before the pandemic), they are eager to buy,” Lipschik said.

    Amazon Plans Furniture Assembly Service to Catch Wayfair DETAY
    Amazon Plans Furniture Assembly Service to Catch Wayfair Inc. is experimenting with a premium service that lets customers opt to have furniture or appliances assembled as soon they arrive at their homes, according to people familiar with the plan. The move, if adopted widely, would help the world’s largest online retailer compete more effectively with Wayfair, Best Buy, Home Depot and Lowe’s -- which all offer similar options.   Amazon is planning to introduce the service in Virginia and two other markets, said one of the people, who requested anonymity to discuss an internal matter. The company currently offers scheduled delivery of big items -- like bunk beds and treadmills -- to a particular room in a shopper’s home. But customers are often disappointed when delivery people off the purchases unassembled in big boxes. Amazon declined to comment. Wayfair shares fell by almost 4% before recovering some of their losses. Amazon was mostly unchanged. The new service requires drivers to unpack and assemble the items, remove the packaging and take the item back on the spot if the customer isn’t satisfied, according to a presentation reviewed by Bloomberg. Previously, customers had to schedule a different contractor to come to their home at a different time to assemble the product, assuming the service was even offered in their location. A training video shows the delivery of a bed and mattress set, as well as a sofa and ottoman, which are fairly simple to assemble. Drivers could be trained to install appliances like washing machines, dryers and dishwashers, according to one of the people, posing a specific threat to Home Depot Inc., Lowe’s Cos Inc. and Best Buy Co., which also sell appliances with installation services. The new offering simplifies the existing Amazon Home Services, which is available in a limited number of cities and lets customers hire contractors through the website to assemble furniture or install ceiling fans and wall-mounted televisions. The new service is designed to make delivery more convenient, cheaper and easier for Amazon to manage, one of the people said.

    China ready to invest US$1.38 billion in Indonesia: envoy DETAY
    China ready to invest US$1.38 billion in Indonesia: envoy

    Last year, Indonesia recorded a 15-percent increase (in its exports to China) Pontianak, W Kalimantan (ANTARA) - China has confirmed plans to invest US$1.38 billion in Indonesia, especially West Kalimantan, Indonesian Ambassador to China and Mongolia, Djauhari Oratmangun, informed on Friday. "So far, China has invested much in West Kalimantan. This year, (Chinese) investors plan to invest in Indonesia, particularly in West Kalimantan and Batang district, Central Java. The value of investments in the furniture industry will reach US$1.38 billion," he disclosed at an international webinar on China-West Kalimantan's economic potential.  A Chinese business delegation is scheduled to visit West Kalimantan and Central Java in April or May, 2021, he said. "Surely, the investment will offer a chance for the regions to advance and build trade cooperation (with China)," he remarked. West Kalimantan currently accounts for 10.13 percent of Indonesia's exports to China, he pointed out.   "Interestingly, Indonesia’s exports (to China have) increased, with West Kalimantan contributing a significant 10.13 percent (of the total exports to China). With the increase, we have been able to reduce problems related to Indonesia-China trade," he added.  Indonesia ranks fourth among ASEAN member states exporting to China, he said.   "During the pandemic, Indonesia-China relations remained good. Chinese investment in Indonesia reached US$4.8 billion in 2020," he noted.   Indonesia's exports to China also rose 15 percent in 2020 compared to a year earlier, he said.   "Last year, Indonesia recorded a 15-percent increase (in its exports to China). (The export of) key commodities rose, with iron and steel exports swelling 136.52 percent, paper and paperboard jumping 133.25 percent, and tin and products skyrocketing 544.07 percent," he added.  The total trade between the two countries topped US$78.48 billion during the period, he said.

    Furniture and Living Expo organised DETAY
    Furniture and Living Expo organised

    ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad Chamber of Commerce & Industry (ICCI) in collaboration with RF Events (SMC-Private)... ISLAMABAD: The Islamabad Chamber of Commerce & Industry (ICCI) in collaboration with RF Events (SMC-Private) Limited, has organized a 3-day “Furniture and Living Expo” starting from February 19, 2021 at Majestic Banquets, Club Road, Islamabad from 10:00 am to 10:00 pm. A wide variety of furniture and interior products of the region are being offered in the Expo at discounted prices to the consumers. The Expo will continue up to February 21, 2021. Sardar Yasir Ilyas Khan, President, Islamabad Chamber of Commerce & Industry inaugurated the Furniture Expo as Chief Guest. Speaking at the occasion, Sardar Yasir Ilyas Khan President ICCI said that the global furniture market was estimated at over USD 500 billion, but Pakistan’s share in it was quite nominal. He urged that the government should provide support to furniture manufacturers and exporters in organizing exhibitions in foreign countries to promote Pakistan’s exports in the international market. He said that Pakistani foreign missions should also explore the potential of Pakistani furniture products in their respective countries and share such information with chambers of commerce. He said that government help was needed to introduce high-tech machinery and establish more training centres to produce more skilled workers for the furniture industry that would accelerate the growth of this important sector. Sardar Yasir Ilyas Khan asked the federal and provincial governments to allocate land for setting up furniture cities in metropolitans of the country that would give a boost to this sector and enhance its exports. He further emphasized that the government should abolish the registration of furniture shopkeepers, showrooms and workshops in Tier-1 retailers in the next budget as the criteria defined in Sec-2, Sub-Sec-43A of Sales Tax Act 1990 should not be applicable on these businesses due to the large size of their products. He assured that ICCI would fully cooperate in resolving the key issues of furniture businesses so that they could play a more effective role in promoting exports.—PR

    Timber exports ly to hit RM23 billion this year, says minister DETAY
    Timber exports ly to hit RM23 billion this year, says minister

    KUALA LUMPUR: Malaysia’s exports of timber and timber products can reach RM23 billion this year, following the arrival of Covid-19 vaccines, primary industries minister Mohd Khairuddin Aman Razali said today. He said the ministry, through the Malaysia Timber Industry Board and Malaysian Timber Council, would strive to ensure the local wood-based industry will remain competitive in both the domestic and global markets. “The ministry is confident the export performance is able to achieve RM23 billion in 2021 especially with the availability of vaccines which are expected to ease the Covid-19 transmission. “The economic recovery in major timber importing countries such as the United States and China as well as increasing demand from other countries would drive the wood industry to remain positive throughout 2021,” he said in a statement today. Mohd Khairuddin said the value of timber exports for 2020 had declined by only 2% to RM22.02 billion, compared with RM22.5 billion in 2019, a good achievement although the Covid-19 pandemic had not ended. “The performance reflected a positive recovery phase when compared with other industries which recorded huge contraction due to the challenges in raw material supply and market demand brought about by the impact of the pandemic. “Export value of timber products started to increase on a monthly basis from May to December 2020 which was during the recovery phase. Companies producing wood-based products particularly furniture, plywood, moulding, and joinery revived their operations to meet orders from the export market,” he said. According to him, the performance of high-value-added products such as furniture, joinery and moulding registered an 11% growth with export value of RM12.3 billion compared with RM11.1 billion in 2019. Out of this, wooden furniture remained as the major product with an export growth of 16% to RM10.6 billion from RM9 billion in 2019. However, wood joinery and moulding saw a decline of 6% and 21% to RM972 million and RM688 million against RM1 billion and RM872.1 million respectively in 2019. Meanwhile, export of sawn timber which is a key product recorded a decrease of 29% to RM2.4 billion from RM3.4 billion in the previous year. Besides that, export of plywood for 2020 fell 17% to RM2.8 billion compared with RM3.8 billion in 2019. This was because of the in export to Japan which is a major buyer of Malaysian plywood due to the contraction in the construction industry as well as competition from other producing countries such as Indonesia and China. “The major markets for timber products which recorded growth were the US and China. Both markets accounted for 44% of Malaysia’s total exports. “The US recorded an increase of 50% to RM7.4 billion compared with RM5 billion in 2019,” said Khairuddin. He added that the growth was influenced by the US government’s economic stimulus for the construction industry during the pandemic and growth in e-commerce which led to the increase in demand for Malaysia’s timber products. China, meanwhile, registered an increase of 23% to RM2.3 billion in 2020 against RM1.8 billion in 2019.

    Against the virus effective wood paint DETAY
    Against the virus effective wood paint

    Turkish academics developed a wood stain effective against the virus. Istanbul Technical University (ITU) Chemistry Department academic staff member Prof. Dr. Yusuf Yağcı and Mehmet Bilgehan Bilgiç, a graduate student at the Department of Polymer Science and Technology at ITU Graduate Education Institute, developed the world's first antiviral wood paint. Bilgiç's article, prepared with his consultant Yağcı, was published under the title "Permanent Hygiene on Wooden Surfaces". Thanks to the new technology inspired by Yağcı's antimicrobial studies in the past and developed by Kubilay Boya, viruses and bacteria are destroyed on wooden surfaces. EFFECTIVE PROTECTION ON TOUCH SURFACES The article emphasizes the role of the paint industry in the fight against COVID-19 and mentions that antiviral coatings stand out as a permanent, fast and reliable solution to prevent transmission by touching. Thanks to its antiviral feature, the new technology will play an important role in the fight against COVID-19.

    Meble Polska goes virtual for May show DETAY
    Meble Polska goes virtual for May show

    Concurrent Home Décor show also will run on digital platform POZNAN, Poland – Major eastern European furniture tradeshow Meble Polska, set for May 24-28, will now take place in a digital virtual format. The concurrent Home Décor expo also converted from an in-person to a virtual event. In November, the shows’ organizer, MTP Group, announced the 2021 events, originally scheduled for February, would postpone until May. As with many tradeshows, however, the ongoing pandemic led to the decision to convert to a virtual event. “As a result of the pandemic, holding the trade fair in the traditional formula is not possible this year,” said Meble Polska Director Józef Szyszka. “Therefore the MTP Group has prepared an native solution that will allow the representatives of the furniture and interiors business from all over the world to meet online and hold talks without the health risks related to direct contact and traveling.” The Meble Polska & Home Décor Online editions will be organized using an intuitive web platform relying upon artificial intelligence to match business partners. After registration, the application will recommend potential partners and save the arranged meetings in the calendar synchronized with Google and Outlook. Manufacturers who will present their offerings during the event will have an opportunity to reach new furniture buyers from all over the world as well as manage relations with existing customers. Meble Polska & Home Décor Online also will be an opportunity to broaden industry knowledge with a series of lectures and webinars on furniture importing from Poland. The latest trends in interior design can be followed during the live broadcast from Bloggers Zone. “MTP Group currently is finalizing adaptation of the tool to the specific needs resulting from the nature of the event,” Szyszka added. “Soon we will be able to present to the exhibitors details of the terms of participation.” More detailed information will be available soon at and