The forestry industry has achieved a trade surplus of US$7 billion this year, accounting for 85% of the sector’s trade surplus, according to the Vietnam Administration of Forestry under the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD).
The Vietnam Administration of Forestry reported that the nation’s export value of wood and forestry products throughout 2018 reached over US$9.3 billion, an on-year increase of 15.9%, making up 23% of the export value of all industries in the agricultural sector.
Key export markets for the forestry industry include the US, Japan, the EU, China and the Republic of Korea, which account for 87% of the export turnover of the forestry industry.
This year's volume of exploited wood reached a total of 27.5 million cubic metres, up 3% from last year.
Notably for the future, after undergoing six years of negotiation, Vietnam and the EU have officially signed the Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade Voluntary Partnership Agreement (FLEGT-VPA), opening up a wealth of opportunities for Vietnam’s wood exports to the EU and other nations across the globe.
Nguyen Xuan Cuong, the Minister of Agriculture and Rural Development,requested the relevant units promote the advantages enjoyed in 2018 into the next year and set a goal of increasing the forest coverage rate to 42% ahead of schedule by 2020.
Minister Cuong noted that as the forestry sector can provide 80% of wood material sources for processing and export, the rate of trade surplus has maintained a high level, accounting for 85% of the sector’s export value.
In 2019, the forestry sector will plant 222,000 hectares of forest, covering 41.85% of the coverage rate, and increase the production value from 5.5% to 6%, while wood exports are expected to hit US$10.5 billion.