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One of the key events of the conference programme of the Mebel 2021 international exhibition was the opening today of the RusMebel 2021 Forum organised by the Association of Furniture and Woodworking Enterprises of Russia and EXPOCENTRE AO.

The forum focuses on a dialogue between business and government on the development of the furniture industry. According to Timur Irtuganov, Director General of the Association of Furniture and Woodworking Enterprises of Russia, the forum participants will discuss a wide range of important topics, from price increases to staff training.

The Conference on Current Problems in the Panel Industry caused a dynamic work and open discussions at the forum. During the substantive discussion of the current situation between wood-based panel manufacturers and furniture manufacturers, experts stated that this year furniture manufacturers have become aware of the dependence of their production costs on forest legislation and the nuances of their suppliers, which were not previously taken into account, such as forest lease agreements.

For example, if the price of round wood doubled in the first half of 2021, this has a direct effect on the price of wood-based panels, which in turn leads to higher prices for furniture products.

Similarly, the global prices of chemicals and components used in the production of wood-based panels have risen by 70-80% in the last year and a half and are consequently affecting the cost of boards and furniture.

The conference was attended by Oleg Bocharov, Deputy Minister of Industry and Trade of the Russian Federation. In particular, he assured the wood-based panel producers of state support. However, he also pointed out that balanced development, taking into account the inter-industry balance in each individual region, is important for the provision of such support.

"We in the region have to see a map: the volume of timber, the volume of logging, the volume of exports. And when all this adds up, we have to understand that board production is the most preferable. Then the Ministry of Industry and Trade will determine the approximate volume of timber processing into boards which will be especially strongly stimulated by the government. When this volume is reached, the support is stopped to avoid overproduction," the deputy minister explained.

Svetlana Fedorova, Director General of Express-Obzor Marketing Company, provided data on the state of production, wood-based panels and plywood market in our country. She stated that the production of wood-based panels and plywood fell significantly during the off-days regime in 2020 due to the pandemic. The second half of last year saw a recovery in production. In the first 9 months of 2021, particleboard production increased by 21% and plywood by 14%. An important feature of the plywood market is that it is export-oriented. More than two thirds of plywood produced is exported. It can be assumed that the growth rate of plywood exports at the end of this year will amount to 7%, the expert noted.

Immediately after the conference, a Meeting of Russian plywood producers was held at the RusMebel 2021 forum.

The forum continues, view streaming.

Press Service, EXPOCENTRE AO