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Japanese plywood producers are interested in supplies of Sakhalin larch
On October 23, the Sakhalin Oblast government held a meeting with representatives of the Japanese company Sojits Building Corporation.
It was about the implementation of a priority investment project, which is being implemented in the Aleksandrovsk-Sakhalinsky region and is aimed at reviving the timber industry complex of the region. Its operator is BM Sakhalin OJSC, which is faced with the task of creating a large modern woodworking complex here.
More than half of the company's shares belong to the regional government, which invested 200 million rubles in the project for the initial promotion of production. And, as the director of "BM Sakhalin" Konstantin Beznosyuk said, logging is already underway. Now it's up to sales and attracting investors.
That is why he and the chairman of the board of directors of Sojits, Ogawa Masaru, traveled to the area so that he could assess the existing logging potential in the north of Sakhalin.
According to Mr. Ogawa, wood in Japan is in great demand for the production of building materials, including plywood, which requires about 7 million cubic meters of roundwood per year. And not just forests, but larch trees. He checked - the larch in the north of Sakhalin was of very high quality. And in general, 20 years ago, 100 percent of Japanese plywood was produced from Russian larch. But then serious changes took place on the market, and now Russian timber cannot withstand competition with American and even European timber.
“It’s surprising that even from Europe it turned out to be cheaper to transport a tree to Japan than from Russia,” said Ogawa Masaru.
As for the own Japanese stocks of larch, it is sorely lacking, and in the production of plywood one has to use even fir, which usually goes to construction lumber (bars, boards, etc.)
“In this regard, we very much hope for timber and sawn timber from Sakhalin, since we are very close, delivery should be cheap,” he stressed.
However, he noted that the issues of logistics are still not worked out. In particular, the Aleksandrovsk-Sakhalin port is closed up, it needs to be restored.
According to the Deputy Minister of Investments and Foreign Relations of the region Elena Sudakova, it is now possible to ship cargoes from one berth in the port, but of course this is not enough for normal operation. It is necessary to reconstruct hydraulic structures, but they are in federal ownership. Therefore, the regional government is preparing an application for the reconstruction of the port entered the new federal program for the development of the Far East and the Baikal region.
In the meantime, the first forest shipments will be shipped by rail to the southern ports. Moreover, the regional government will compensate part of the cost of rail transportation.
According to Ogawa, several ship parties of round timber are needed for Japanese plywood producers to remember the quality of Sakhalin larch and think that in order to reduce the cost (here the main role is played by Russian protective duties on the export of unprocessed timber), a plant for the production of veneer and lumber could be built from fir on Sakhalin - in Aleksandrovsk-Sakhalinsky.
These ship parties are already being prepared and will be shipped in December-January.