South Africa: Declining Area Planted May Present Opportunities for US Lumber Exports to South Africa

The production of timber is forecast to decrease by 20 percent to 12.4 million Metric Tons (MT) in the 2020/21 Marketing Year (MY), based on the decrease in area planted, fire damage, pests/diseases, and the slow-down in industry logging rates caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. The area planted to timber is expected to continue its decline to 1.18 million hectares (HA) in the 2020/21 MY, based on the low replanting levels, stringent government restrictions on water licenses and environmental policies restricting plantations in protected areas, and farmers replacing timber with other crops such as citrus, macadamia and avocados. South Africa is a promising market for U.S exports of wood pulp and high quality hard wood used in furniture making. The continued decline in timber area planted may also present opportunities for U.S exports of timber used for structural and industrial purposes if demand increases in the next 5 – 10 years.

South Africa: Declining Area Planted May Present Opportunities for US Lumber Exports to South Africa