|Dien Quang Hiep, chairman of the Binh Duong Furniture Association, introduces the first Vietnam International Furniture Fair (VIFF 2019) at a press briefing in HCM City on November 6. — VNS Photo Xuan Huong
Speaking at a press briefing to introduce the first Vietnam International Furniture Fair (VIFF 2019) in HCM City on November 6, Dien Quang Hiep, the association chairman, said: “Exports of wood and forestry products exceeded $10 billion in the first 10 month of the year. Therefore, it will not be difficult.
“Vietnam has just 6 per cent of the world’s export market, so there is still room for the country to increase exports.”
“The rising demand in new and promising markets such as Canada, the Eurasian Economic Union, and South Central Asia increases opportunities for wooden furniture exports, especially of classical style furniture.”
Tariffs on many products would continue to be reduced and removed under the Comprehensive and Progressive Agreement for Trans-Pacific Partnership and the EU-Vietnam Free Trade Agreement, offering an advantage to Vietnamese products, he said.
“There are opportunities to boost furniture exports.
“The Government has set a target of $20 billion in 2025, and it is not an unrealistic target.”
But there are challenges requiring woodworking enterprises to keep a close eye on the market and make appropriate plans, he said.
Bui Chinh Nghia, director of the Department of Forest Production Development under the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development, said, “To meet the export target of $18-20 billion, the industry will need about 30 million cubic metres of timber, and local supply will gradually meet demand.”
In 2010 it only met 25 per cent of the demand, but now it is 70 per cent, he said.
All furniture made for exports are made from legally sourced timber, mainly acacia and rubber wood, he said.
The Vietnam International Furniture Fair (VIFF) 2019 will be held from November 27 to 30 at the Saigon Exhibition and Convention Centre with 500 booths to be set up by over 100 local and foreign exhibitors including Taiwan, Malaysia, China and Thailand.
It will showcase bedroom furniture, dining sets, kitchen cabinets, flooring, office furniture, outdoor furniture, interior furnishings, decorative accessories and materials, hardware and fittings, and machinery used in the woodworking industry.
Many seminars and conferences will be held, including on promoting foreign investment in Vietnam’s wood processing and forestry industries and on PEFC/VFCS certification: Demand, supply and benefit.
It will be organised by the Binh Duong Furniture Association and the Taiwan Furniture Manufacturers Association.
Vietnam has around 4,700 wood and forest products processing enterprises.
Nghia said its timber and forest products are exported to more than 120 countries and territories.
The country is the fifth largest wooden products exporter and second largest in Asia.
The sector enjoyed a trade surplus of $7 billion last year.