The main importing countries Italy and Germany bought more softwood lumber from Austria until the end of February. Exports to Italy rose by 7% to nearly 450,000 m³, which is significantly more than in the pre-pandemic years of 2019 and 2020 (around 430,000 m³). Shipments to Austria’s neighbor in the south thus account for 47% of total exports.
Germany received just under 190,000 m³ in the first two months, i. e. 4% more than in the same period of 2021. Export volumes are also much bigger than they were in 2019 and 2020.
Shipments to the MENA region are stable at a low level. The 10% decrease in exports to Slovenia from where the Austrian softwood lumber is shipped to North Africa and the Middle East reflects this. Volumes nearly halved compared to pre-pandemic levels (around 115,000 m³), totaling only 64,000 m³ in two months.
What stands out is the increase in shipments to Japan. The Austrian sawmill industry is making the most of the high prices and raised its export volumes by 43% to almost 50,000 m³ in the first two months.