The total exports of US hardwood lumber and veneer to the Middle East and North Africa region surged by 11 per cent in 2022 to hit $107 million, said a report by American Hardwood Export Council (AHEC) released ahead of the Dubai WoodShow.

The event will see AHEC host a large American Hardwood Pavilion with individual booths occupied by 14 US hardwood exporting companies as well as the Indiana State Department of Agriculture.

The top firms include Allegheny Wood Products, Baillie Lumber, Boss Lumber, Cascade Hardwood, Cummings Lumber, Hardwoods of America, Kamps Hardwoods, Kennebec Lumber, Midwest Hardwood, Missouri Walnut, Nina Company, Oaks Unlimited, Penn-Sylvan International and Wheeland Lumber.

According to AHEC, the Mena region remains a very important export market for American red oak lumber, which is the dominant species in the US hardwood forest and the most commercially-available.  Last year, shipments of red oak lumber to the region reached 46,248 cu m, accounting for 45 per cent of the total volume exported, stated the report.

AHEC has been taking part in the Dubai WoodShow since its first edition, hosting American Hardwood Pavilions and bringing US hardwood exporting companies to the show.

“We are looking forward to this year’s show and bringing back a large contingent of US hardwood exporters. The American hardwood industry is committed to supplying the Mena region for the long term and supporting regional growth in wood processing and consumption,” remarked AHEC Regional Director Roderick Wiles.

Citing US Department of Agriculture data, he said that shipments of American hardwood lumber (sawn timber) to the Mena region reached a value of $81.98 million and a volume of 103,246 cu m last year, marking an increase of nine per cent and 13 per cent respectively over 2021.

The direct exports of American hardwood veneers to the region grew by 20 per cent over 2021 to reach a value of $25.2 million, with the majority shipped to the UAE, Turkey and Israel, he added.