China Slowdown Not Hurting Demand for B.C. Wood Products
Prince George, B.C. – The economy may be slowing down in China but Minister of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations Steve Thomson says that doesn’t mean bad news for B.C.’s wood sector.
He made the comment Wednesday during a teleconference from Beijing while in the midst of the provincial government’s Asia Trade Mission to China and Japan.
“Certainly the people are aware of the overall economic situation here,” said Thomson. “But what we have found in all of our engagement here, from the forest sector, is continued strong growth and continued opportunities for the sector.”
He added the growth comes from China’s strong focus on meeting climate change objectives.
“With a focus on the use of wood as an environmentally sound building material,” said Thomson. “So all of our companies are finding strong support for the wood sector and continued opportunities and continued ability to grow the markets here.”
He’s been joined on the mission by over 30 senior representatives from BC industry, the federal government and Susan Yurkovich, president and CEO of the Council of Forest Industries.
“I’m very pleased to be taking part in this mission, my first mission,” she said.”It’s important for us to tell our story of high quality wood products we provide our markets.”
While in China the government also signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the Chinese National Ministry of Housing and Urban Development.
This agreement is a renewal of an existing MOU that was signed in March 2010 to explore how modern wood frame technology can enhance the energy efficiency of buildings and support the goal of reducing carbon emissions in China’s construction sector.
“A renewal of the memorandum of understanding with the national Ministry of Housing and Urban and Rural Development will help us continue to build momentum for wood frame construction in China,” said Thomson.