MINSK, 16 October (BelTA) - The companies affiliated with Bellesbumprom intend to build up furniture exports to the European Union, Yuri Nazarov, chairman of the Belarusian timber, woodworking, pulp and paper industry concern Bellesbumprom, told the media on the sidelines of the Furniture 2019 expo in Minsk on 16 October, BelTA has learned.
“The share of the Russian market in our furniture export is declining but it still remains a premium and most important market for us. We are now working to step up export to the EU. We are past the time of one-time deliveries to the European market. We are starting to work on the systemic basis, with retail chains. Thus, the Eurasian Economic Union and the European Union are our priorities in trade," said Yuri Nazarov.
According to him, production cooperation has been picking up steam. “Some of our companies are beginning to fulfill the orders of the largest European furniture manufacturers. This is very important, this is our future," he noted.
Belarusian furniture is exported to 30 countries. Among them are many countries in Europe (Italy, Germany, France, Poland, and others) and also faraway markets such as the United States, Canada and New Zealand. Currently, there are almost 1,300 furniture producers in Belarus. The largest of them make part of Bellesbumprom and the Association of Furniture and Woodworking Companies. Almost all furniture companies are export-oriented. About 70% of the furniture produced in Belarus is sold internationally.
In January-August 2019, the companies affiliated with Bellesbumprom delivered $379.5 million worth of products to foreign markets, up by 7.9% year-on-year. The increase in export shipments has been registered across almost all types of products. But due to a significant drop in prices in foreign markets for plywood, chipboards and furniture, the export of these goods has generated less revenue. Taking into account the unfavorable external factors, the enterprises are taking prompt measures to find new ways to sell products. Thus, Ivatsevichdrev now sells furniture to a large Polish network retailer, which provided the company with an opportunity to work at the full capacity. Gomeldrev began supplying furniture to a popular European retail chain. Molodechnomebel makes furniture to the order of a large European company.
In addition, the companies are taking measures to tap into new sales markets. For example, ZOV-LenEvromebel began to supply furniture to the United Arab Emirates and reported a 10.5% increase in exports. Thanks to new contracts in foreign markets, Gomel Furniture Factory has increased exports by 6.9%.
The 26th edition of the Furniture 2019 expo is running in Minsk on 16-19 October. Traditionally, the centerpiece of the expo is a large collective stand of Bellesbumprom. The Association of Furniture and Woodworking Companies of Belarus is also taking part in Furniture 2019 with a large stand. All in all, Furniture 2019 features more than 80 Belarusian and foreign manufacturers and suppliers of furniture and parts, equipment and technologies from Belarus, Russia, Germany, Austria and Poland.
The key event of the exhibition's business program was the Furniture Forum 2019. It gathered a large number of specialists in furniture manufacturing, design and marketing. The Furniture 2019 expo will sum up the results of two national competitions and name the best furniture company of the year and the best furniture of the year in Belarus. The competitions have been organized by Bellesbumprom and the Association of Furniture and Woodworking Companies of Belarus.