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Growing a low risk African hardwood market

Jul 13, 2019 | FLEGT Policy News

The UK Timber Trade Federation is hosting a special conference for the hardwood sector, ‘African Hardwood: Reducing risk, improving supply’. (Photo: Klas Sander, courtesy Danzer)

The event takes place at the Building Centre in London on October 31 and IMM will attend and report on it.

“Africa, particularly West Africa and the Congo Basin region, has been a supplier of quality hardwoods to the UK and Europe for hundreds of years. However, recent years have seen market share drop considerably,” said TTF Managing Director David Hopkins. “This has been due to a number of factors, not least the increased political, environmental and social risk associated with doing business in Africa.”

The one-day conference, he added, is intended to give a picture of the state of the African timber market, what products are available, what regions are doing well, possible future trends and what solutions are being implemented to reduce business risk and improve quality of supply.

‘We will also be including examples of risk reduction and forest governance improvement from other areas of the world, including Guyana and Indonesia,” said Mr Hopkins.

Last year the TTF held a conference focused on the oak market, which drew a capacity  audience, and the African event is expected to attract similar numbers. An open invitation is extended to importers, distributors and other stakeholders across the EU. 

Conference admittance is free, but delegates must register at