Vietnam wood exports to rise to new record level hinh anh 1This year the export markets for Vietnamese wood industry is expected to be excellent, experts said. (Photo:
HCM City (VNS/VNA) - Wood products exports are expected to rise to a record 15-16 billion USD this year despite the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.

They were worth 12.5 billion USD last year.

According to the General Department for Agricultural Products Processing and Market Development, in the first five months they were worth 6.6 billion USD, up 61.3 percent year-on-year.

Most companies have received orders for until the end of 2021, and they are 30 percent higher than in 2020.

The US is the largest market, accounting for 60.4 percent of all exports, followed by China with 9.9 percent, Japan with 9.5 percent, and the Republic of Korea with 5.7 percent.

Vietnam’s wood products have achieved a solid foothold in many markets around the world, highly appreciated for their design and technology.

With the disruption of the supply chain due to the pandemic, the world's leading distributors tend to diversify and seek safer sources, and Vietnam needs to make use of this opportunity, analysts said.

But the Ministry of Industry and Trade also warned that the rapid growth in exports comes with a concomitant risk of anti-dumping and anti-subsidy threats.

Vietnam’s wood industry is affected by trade tensions between major countries.

It has already faced anti-dumping lawsuits from the US and the Republic of Korea, especially for plywood-related commercial fraud and tax evasion. But plywood is not the only item facing a threat, the Ministry of Industry and Trade said.

Recently the US Trade Representative accused the Vietnamese timber industry of using illegal wood, and the risk of resultant trade restrictions is very high.

The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development has issued a decision on geographic origins and timber species risk categories. This plays an important role in controlling the legality of imported timber.

According to the foreign trade defence handling division at the Ministry of Industry and Trade’s department of trade defence, Vietnam has faced a total of 199 cases so far, and in the last five years there have been 97 commercial defense investigations.

The most problematic markets are the US, India, Turkey, Australia, Canada, the EU and the Philippines, it said.

In 2020 alone, Vietnam faced a total of 37 cases related to tax evasion on plywood products and anti-dumping related to MDF wood.

To avoid anti-dumping and anti-tax evasion investigations, businesses need to have knowledge of trade defence and understand the true nature of this tool to make the right responses.
When exporting to a certain market, they should have information from importers, and as soon as information about anti-dumping investigations is known, businesses must respond.

The ministry has said it will issue warnings to support businesses.

It is also necessary to control exports to that market to ensure the lowest tax rate.

The Ministry of Industry and Trade also said the wood industry faces a severe shortage of human resources, especially tech-savvy workers while vocational training schools and universities find it very difficult to attract students./.