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Forests and Timber Processing: From Timber to Pulp and Paper Factories
6 September 2017

The Russian Far East is home to 51% of forest resources in the Asia-Pacific region. Of some 90 million cubic metres of timber available for processing, however, only 16 million cubic metres, or 18%, are harvested. Around 75% of timber is exported in the form of logs; only 25% is processed into lumber and plywood. As for waste and substandard timber, this is permanently lost. In 2016, Vnesheconombank announced the creation of a forestry cluster in the Russian Far East, and in 2017 a major Chinese investor declared their interest in constructing a pulp mill. In which regions of the Russian Far East would investment in forestry bring the most gain? How can a forestry cluster and a complete cycle of timber processing be established in the Russian Far East? What solutions must the government provide in order for this to be achieved? Could raising duties on log exports assist in the development of deep processing enterprises? What impact will the construction of a pulp mill have on the sector regionally?

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