2016 was also the year when China took over Japan’s role as the world’s largest importer of hardwood chips – roughly half of all hardwood chips traded in the Pacific Rim were destined for Chinese ports in 2016.

Based on import volumes to China in the first nine months of 2017, it is likely that Chinese imports will have hit a new record high of over 11.5 million odmt in 2017, according to the WRQ.

There have been a number of alterations in the trade flows of hardwood chips in the Pacific Rim over the past decade based on price fluctuations, chip quality preferences and changes in business relationships. The latest issues of the WRQ highlight how the chip trade has evolved from 2012 to 2016 as an example of the shifting market that exists in this part of the world.

The major changes over the past five years have been Vietnam’s expansion in exports to both China and Japan, and Australia’s increase in shipments to China (equal to Vietnam’s volumes in Q2, 2017). www.woodprices.com