Research and data on forest commodity supply chains and policy

Line chart of US imports of Romanian timber

Romania is the eighth largest supplier of imported softwood lumber to the United States (U.S. Census Bureau Trade Data). And the volume of Romanian softwood lumber entering the U.S. market has grown exponentially over the last decade.

Location of Romania on the map

The volume of softwood lumber imported into the U.S. from Romania increased 16,926% between the end of 2010 and 2019. In 2019, the U.S. imported 151,703 cubic meters of softwood lumber from Romania, while in 2010, just 891m3 entered.

Line chart of US softwood lumber imports from Romania

And in the first eight months of 2020, it’s up 39% over the same period as the year prior.

Highlight of Romania in chart of softwood lumber imports by country

Still, the share of softwood lumber from Romania in U.S. markets is small when considering the dominant country of origin, Canada (less than 1%). Excluding Canada, Romania accounts for 4.29% of the softwood lumber imports in the U.S. market.

Pie chart showing Romania's share of the U.S. softwood lumber import market excluding Canada

But Romania’s share of U.S. softwood lumber markets changes when looking at species-specific segments. Romania ships Spruce, Fir, Pine, and SPF lumber to the U.S. The main species being Spruce which makes up 88.7% of the total Romanian softwood lumber imports (by volume).

Pie chart of softwood lumber species imported into the US from Romania

Looking closer at the U.S. Spruce market (excluding Sitka Spruce), the United States imported 1,244,547 cubic meters in the first eight months of 2020. (This is an increase of 89% over the same period in the year prior.) Of this, Romania accounted for 8.7% of the imported Spruce lumber market share, behind only Germany and Sweden, and ahead of Russia and Canada.

Pie chart of Romanias share of US spruce lumber import market excluding Sitka

If you buy Spruce lumber in the United States, there’s a decent chance it originated in Romania. And this chance is likely to get bigger in the years to come.

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