Bustling wood businesses trade via online platform

April 15, 2021 | 10:48
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The switch from offline to online models by enterprises in the handicraft and wood sector helped them reach good results, even amidst and after the COVID-19 pandemic.
bustling wood businesses trade via online platform
Wooden products displayed at the Vietnam Furniture Matching Week

A dynamic Vietnamese handicraft and wood sector is portrayed at the Vietnam Furniture Matching Week 2021 taking place on April 12-19, luring in representatives from more than 70 large wood buyers across the world.

On April 13, the first online trading event of the Vietnamese handicraft and wood sector, with over 100 online showrooms on the HOPE platform, attracted 17,000 visitors.

At the Furniture Sourcing Day, the main event of the Vientam Furniture Matching Week, the representative of Fine Scandinavia, a Swedish-owned manufacturing company, stated that amid COVID-19 almost all wood businesses witnessed an increase in sales as orders were continually on the rise.

“The pandemic pushed us to use the online platform of HOPE to introduce our products to customers. Thanks to online matching, we can access a large number of foreign buyers, 30-40 per cent more than the previous year,” said she.

Savier Duquesnoy, commercial manager of Squarehome, a Spanish company focusing on modern indoor furniture collections, said that after two months of decrease at the outbreak of the pandemic, orders returned to normal and rose even higher.

As March and April are peak months for the handicraft and wood sector, he said that in April, the company targets to hit 75 per cent of its full-year sales target while at the same time rising 30 per cent above its performance last year.

The positive prospects for handicraft and wood items during and after the pandemic is also giving a leg up to associated sectors and businesses. Ho My Linh, executive assistant at BYD Forklift, a company specialised in leasing and selling forklifts for manufacturers, told VIR that orders amid COVID-19 increased by 10-20 per cent on-year.

Nguyen Quoc Khanh, chairman of the Handicraft and Wood Industry Association of Ho Chi Minh City (HAWA) said that despite a volatile 2020, Vietnam's handicraft and wood sector witnessed many breakthroughs and reaped encouraging results due to the dynamism of businesses.

In the middle of March, Vietnam's wood exports ranked second in the world, following China and running laps around Germany, Poland, and Italy.

Especially, the Vietnamese handicraft and wood sector has proved itself with The Wing Desk, inspired by social distancing and remote working, became the first project from Asia to receive the European Design Awards in 2021.

“Vietnam will become a priority destination in the global supply chain. The increase in the country's ranking showed the clear efforts of businesses to adapt to changes by quickly applying new methods in production management, investing in design and researching new models and materials for products. Buyers have many chances to connect with high-quality suppliers,” he added.

Statistics from the General Department of Vietnam Customs show that in 2020 the export turnover of wood products reached $9.5 trillion, an increase of 22.5 per cent compared to 2019, accounting for 77.22 per cent of the total export turnover of wood and wood-based products, up from 73.67 per cent in 2019.

In 2020, wood and wood-based product exports were the sixth-largest commodity group in terms of export turnover in Vietnam.

The US is the main export market for Vietnamese wood and wood-based products. Despite the heavy impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, the export turnover of wood and wood-based products to this market reached $7.2 trillion last year, up 34.37 per cent compared to 2019. The was the highest increase among Vietnam's export markets and accounted for 57.92 per cent of the total export turnover of industrial wood and wood-based products.

It is anticipated that in 2021, the increase in FDI inflows to Vietnam, the COVID-19 vaccine, as well as the control of wood input sources will all help Vietnam's exports of wood and wood-based products continue to grow a rate of over 15 per cent.

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