Forestry sector continues to soar

20 June 2019

Australia’s forestry industry continues to show significant signs of growth revealed in a new report released today by the Australian Bureau of Agricultural and Resource Economics (ABARES).

Assistant Minister for Forestry and Fisheries, Senator Jonathon Duniam, said the report’s findings were great news for the country’s economy and particularly the regions.

“The report shows an increase in most areas within the forestry sector, which is a positive result for jobs in our regional communities and for our economy,” Minister Duniam said.

“The total value of logs harvested in 2017–18 was a record high of $2.7 billion, up 4 per cent from 2016–17.

“Commercial plantation logs comprised of 87 per cent of Australia’s total log harvest in 2017-18, up 19 per cent over the decade.

“This increase in log harvest is underpinned by strong export demand in hardwood woodchips and roundwood logs in combination with a high demand for wood products from the construction of housing and other residential dwellings.”

Strong export demand continued into the first half of 2018−19, with higher woodchip volumes contributing to an overall rise in export value.

“It’s fantastic to see our Australian wood products are in demand globally—with a significant overall rise in export value of 10 per cent, compared with the first six months of 2017–18,” Minister Duniam said.

“The Australian Government has made forestry a priority, reinforced by the delivery of the National Forest Industries Plan—so it’s great to see this plan reaping tangible benefits for the sector.”

And while Minister Duniam said the report shows growth and stability for some key areas, there is still work to be done to increase the industry’s productivity.

“The Australian Government is committed to the forestry industry and will continue to face challenges and provide opportunities to continue to grow and support the sector,” Minister Duniam said.

Read the full ABARES Australian forest and wood products statistics September and December quarters 2018 on the website.