Current issue: 54(4)
The export of roundwood from Finland was studied based on the official statistics of foreign trade. The volumes were converted to solid volumes under bark. Roundwood (logs and masts) or raw timber trade consisted mainly of saw logs. The main tree species was Scots pine (Pinus sylvestrs L.) and Norway spruce (Picea abies (L.) H. Karst.). The annual volumes varied from 29,200 m3 in the war year 1918 to 657,200 m3 in 1924. Before the World War I the roundwood was exported mainly to Sweden and Russia, after the war the trade to Russia ceased. Also split spillet was a significant export item before the war. The export peaked in 1916 to 3 million m3, but decreased after the war to 30,000‒40,000 m3. The most important export item in the group of hewn timber has been Egyptian rafters, with annual export of 15,000‒284,600 m3 with the exception of the time of war. The export of spars exported to other countries than Egypt was highest before the war with 125,000 m3. The export of sleepers varied strongly, peaking in 1922. The total export of roundwood varied from 131,000 m3 in 1918 to 4.3 million m3 in 1927. Roundwood has mainly been exported to the European countries. Before the war, the main trading partners were United Kingdom and Russia. After the war the share of United Kingdom was nearly half of the volume, and Russia was replaced with Sweden.
The PDF includes a summary in German.
When Finland attained independence in 1917–1918, about 65% of her population made their linving from agriculture and only 17% from industry. Despite the fact that most sectors of the modern forest industry, i.e. sawmilling, pulp and paper making as well as plywood industry were then in existence a considerable proportion of timber was exported as roundwood.
It was reasonable to assume, however, that further economic development would reduce the roundwood exports to provide raw material for industry. The present paper investigates the Finnish roundwood exports in 1921–1986 largely from the point of view of this hypothesis. Examination of statistics is focused on the change of volume of exports in the major categories of wood, changes in the trade policies of consumer countries, changes in competition between exporting countries and changes in Finnish export policy.
The PDF includes an abstract in English.