Exports of American hardwood to UK declined in 2015
As reported by the American Hardwood Export Council (AHEC), in 2015 the volume of US sawn hardwood exports to the UK fell to 93,000 m3 from 105,000 m3 in 2014.
However, exports to the UK in 2015 were still significantly higher than in 2013 and contribute to a general, upward trend. The downturn last year was evident across all the main species exports into the UK including white oak (the species which accounts for over half the US timber sold in the UK), tulipwood and ash. Conversely, exports of walnut to the UK market continue to grow, making 2015 the sixth consecutive year of increasing exports.
On a continental scale, the economic value of US sawn hardwood exports to Europe declined by 9.9% to $277 million, while volume fell 11.1% to 348,100 m3.
Rising exports to Spain and Ireland managed to offset the declining exports to the UK, Italy, Germany, Portugal and Sweden. Despite a fall in exports of species including tulipwood and ash, the exports of white oak and red oak increased slightly.
These declines occurred at a time when European currencies weakened sharply against the dollar and there was only slow post-recession growth in key economic sectors, like construction and furniture.