ABDULLAH TEVER, Chairman of Istanbul Wood and Forestry Products Exporters Association

2013 In terms of wood products and forest products, the year 2013 is passing by beyond our expectations… For example, last November our exports increased by 23.9 % compared to November of 2012 and also November exports’ share of exports of Turkey was 3.3 %. When viewed on an annual basis, our increase in exports has been 14.1 %. Our goal was $ 4,300 billion for this year and we have already passed it. Although our domestic market seeming to have business action, there has been a recession compared to previous years. The biggest problem is the increase of imports of furniture raw materials from foreign countries, such as chipboard, MDF, fiberboard and laminate products. Currently our exports and imports of these materials are equal. Together with our sales abroad and these materials from abroad, the facilities here are experiencing sales challenges. Sometimes the capacity drops to 65 %. Terms of payment can be almost up to 10, 11 or even 12 months. This is forcing companies in terms of finance. In 2014, our exports will face even more difficulties. On one hand, our need for wood raw material will increase. Since the soft wood raw material is prohibited because of applying insecticide, reaching to the capacity will be even more difficult. Regarding the products from wood chips as raw materials, cheap cost will be over because of the high currency and this will result as more finished products to enter Turkish market. In order to avoid it and bring this problem to the lowest level, forest management should not raise prices wood and produce more.