Many Chinese businesses have hurried to Vietnam to buy wood because their government closed the natural forests in 14 provinces. Thus, almost 90% of the timber in the Central Highlands has been sold to Chinese.
As reported by Vietnam Net, this has caused great anxiety among Vietnamese wooden furniture manufacturers. It is expected that China will have to import 50% of the volume of timber it needs, and the majority will be from Vietnam. Chinese businesses have been flocking to Asian countries to look for timber. However, other countries are also taking drastic measures to protect their timber resources.
Laos, Cambodia and Myanmar have prohibited the export of some kinds of timber and this has caused a lot of pressure on the demand for hardwood from countries with developed wood processing industries like China, India and Vietnam.
Chinese businesses have also been going to the Central Highlands to purchase timber. Meanwhile, Vietnam lacks timber materials to make products for export and domestic consumption. The country needs 24 million m3 of wood every year.
As Vietnam Net reported, the Vietnamese wooden manufacturers are afraid of competing with Chinese businessmen, who have powerful financial capability, big production scale and strong cooperation. At the same time, most Vietnamese enterprises are small, and therefore, are less competitive than Chinese.
According to Do Xuan Lap, chair of the Binh Dinh Wood and Forestry Products Association, many Chinese enterprises have set up establishments in most of the timber growing areas to collect materials, especially in the Central Highlands.