Measures to help wood industry overcome difficulties

April 18, 2009 1:56 am 

HO CHI MINH CITY, April 17 – The Government should develop a long-term strategy for wood processing industry in order to help it attain a sustainable development.

Deputy Chairman of the Ho Chi Minh City Handicraft and Wood Industry Association Tran Quoc Manh also recommended that a product development centre be set up to facilitate wood processors in model design and market orientation.

According to the Industry and Trade Ministry’s Trade Promotion Department, made-in-Vietnam wood products have set a firm foothold in a number of foreign markets thanks to their high quality and competitiveness.

The industry, which posted an export value of 61 million USD in 1996, earned 2.8 billion USD in exports in 2008, becoming one of the country’s five hard currency earners.

Vietnam now ranks second in the Southeast Asian region in terms of wood exports, with products being presented in more than 120 countries around the world. <P>Particularly, exports to the US increased from 500,000 USD in 2006 to 1 billion USD in 2008 or one-third of the industry’s total value, since Vietnam joined the World Trade Organization.

However, poor technology and management alongside shortage of skillful human resources and capital are making it hard for the industry with 2,600 processors to develop further.

Also, the global economic crisis has put pressure on the industry, having narrowed its export market.

The deputy chairman suggested that the Government assist processors in approaching new markets, such as East Europe, the Middle-East and North America. (PNA/VNA) vcs/utb

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