Myanmar: Firm and stable market demand for teak

ITTO's Tropical Timber Market Report
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The market situation remains the same as reported throughout the first quarter of 2013. Teak market is firm and there is good demand for fresh cut hardwood (i.e. non-teak) logs. It is expected that business will remain steady for the next few months.

Household use of wood fuel the cause of deforestation
The Myanmar Weekly Eleven, a local journal, reported that Forestry Minister U Win Tun said Myanmar is one of the countries in the region where the rate of deforestation is the highest, adding that the major cause is illegal cutting for household fuelwood and charcoal production.

Association and ETTF to undertake legality assessment
The Joint Secretary of the Myanmar Timber Merchants Association U Bar-Bar Cho has been quoted as saying the association is working with the European Timber Trade Federation (ETTF) to agree a MOU for an independent assessment of the systems in place in Myanmar to ensure that all timber is legally harvested.

The MOU is being developed in response to the introduction of the EUTR.

Myanmar intends to demonstrate that it has adequate systems to ensure compliance with the criteria for ‘Due Diligence’ thus ensuring access to the EU market. The Myanmar industry is optimistic that an agreement can be worked out in the coming months.

Exporters mull abandoning EU market
It has been reported in the domestic press that some timber industrialists say they may cease timber export to the EU preferring to concentrate on sales to countries where timbers from Myanmar are used to satisfy local market demand rather than for re-export to EU markets.

Several Myanmar timber merchants have expressed the view that, due to the growth in domestic demand, even if log exports are banned the country may soon have little excess wood products to export.

On the other hand other analysts point out that, though log exports are no longer a major foreign exchange earner, the industry is still an important source of foreign exchange and provides thousands of jobs.

February Teak Prices
Average prices during the January 2013 Teak tender sales are shown below. Prices are in Euro, per hoppus ton.

Grade Quantity (Tons) € per ton
4th Quality 10 5046
Sawing Grade-1 21 3312
Sawing Grade-2 36 3048
Sawing Grade-4 234 2502
Sawing Grade-5 135 1872
Sawing Grade-6 103 1615
Sawing Grade-7 64 1453

Hoppus ton=1.8m³; All grades, except SG-3/5/6, are length 8' x girth 5' &up. SG-3/4/6 are girth 4' &up. SG-3 grade is higher than SG-4 but with lower girth and price.
Prices differ due to quality or girth at the time of the transaction.

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