BATEV 2023 Shows Opportunities for Southern Pine
Argentina may be a strong producer of wood, including low-priced, uncertified Southern Pine, but there’s still opportunity for market growth, according to the Southern Forest Products Association and American Softwoods representatives who attended the BATEV 2023 tradeshow in Buenos Aires, Argentina, from June 28-July 1.
BATEV 2023 allowed the group to follow up on a previous trade event held in 2022 and continue establishing connections with individuals in the wood products industry as well as design professionals and academia.
The primary goal was to educate BATEV 2023 attendees about U.S. structural panels, engineered wood products, and Southern Pine lumber, in addition to meeting importers/distributors looking to purchase U.S. wood products.
BATEV 2023 Experience
AMSO booth visitors, which totaled nearly 115, included 40 architects, 22 construction materials distributors, and 10 wood products distributors, with academia, trade organization representatives, professionals, and end users also stopping by.
A survey of booth visitors showed the following:
- What is your field of work? 26% were architects, 25% were builders, and 7% were engineers.
- With which boards or woods have you worked with (or know about)? 37% indicated OSB, 14% indicated Southern Pine, 8% indicated glulam, and 11% said they haven’t worked with U.S. products.
- What would you like to know more about? Information and uses of different products, boards and softwoods in the U.S. led the way, followed by contact information for U.S. providers/producers, information on local distributors, and information on the sustainability of U.S. wood products.
Many of the wood distributors were not aware of the details of import processes from the U.S., while university professors mentioned interest in webinars or seminars to enrich their educational activities; however, they didn’t provide a specific focus.
American Softwoods in Argentina
Argentina is virtually self-sufficient in supplying sawn wood; however, there is a strong interest in OSB, as imports from Chile and Brazil have made this product well-known. Additionally, a new plant was announced in Argentina, and tariffs between Argentina and Brazil are zero, based on MERCOSUR free-trade agreements.
The country is a strong producer of wood, including low-priced uncertified Southern Pine, in Misiones, an Argentinean province. Therefore, engineered wood products have a better chance of success than lumber, unless certification is enforced. However, since Argentina currently does not enforce wood certification, there is a window of opportunity to work on having the country accept and adopt U.S. standards.
Drafts have significantly reduced the ability to obtain foreign currency in Argentina, whose economy is based on agricultural exports. As a consequence, regulations such as the Argentine System of Imports preclude imports on cash-in-advance payments. Importers pay in foreign currency up to 90 days after receiving merchandise, and letters of credit are not customary. It’s worth noting potential importers may request credit, but risk assessment is recommended before moving forward.
SFPA members: Don’t forget to check out the contacts secured during the show and their corresponding contact information on our members-only site!
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