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Lower demand and fierce competiton on european forest product markets

Published: 02 October 1996

Autumn 1996: lower demand, fierce competition and continuing low prices affect the European forest product markets, stress the United Nations Economic Commission for Europe Timber Committee (UN/ECE) and the FAO European Forestry Commission in their official review and forecasts for 1996 and 1997. In North America, however, market conditions are satisfactory due to the continuing strength of the housing markets. The countries in transition of eastern Europe are now recovering from the deep recession of the early 1990s, but differences between national situations are becoming more marked. Production in Russia continues to fall, but more slowly than before.

For 1997, a weak recovery is expected for Europe and a continuation of present market conditions for North America and other parts of the region.

The official text adopted at the joint session of the UN/ECE Timber Committee and the FAO European Forest Commission is attached and includes quantitative estimates and forecasts at the regional level. The full version of the session's review, with country forecasts, will be issued very shortly as No. 6 of the current volume of the Timber Bulletin. The discussion was based on the secretariat's Annual Forest Products Market Review (covering 1995 and early 1996), issued in August 1996 (Timber Bulletin volume XLIX (1996), No. 3) and Forest Products Statistics 1991-1995, (No. 2 of same volume, also issued in August).

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