12 AMERICAN HARDWOOD Southeast Asia Supplement 2018 I n aggregate, Southeast Asia imports a higher volume of American hardwoods than all of Europe, and is quickly catching up in terms of total value. Themost popular American hardwood species in Southeast Asia is tulipwood, which accounts for 52% of the region’s imports by volume. Also popular in Southeast Asia is Americanwhite oak, which by volume, is 22% of the region’s market. Many other American species grew in popularity in SE Asia last year, but perhaps one of the biggest winners has been American red oak. A species unique to the United States, red oak is prized for its unique colour, swirling grain patterns, and ease of workmanship and finishing. Red oak has long been the most popular American hardwood in China, and over the last two years it is becoming more popular in Southeast Asia. In total, this region purchased 28% more red oak in 2017 than in 2016, up to over $20 million. Vietnam led the way in Southeast Asia with a 22% jump in consumption. As of 2017, Vietnam represents just over 7% of the global export market for American hardwoods and 81% of the Southeast Asian market. Much of Vietnam’s consumption of American hardwoods is material for By all measures, 2017 was a record year for U.S. hardwood use in Southeast Asia. In terms of value in US$, Southeast Asia imported over $260 million of American hardwoods in 2017. That’s nearly 550,000 cubic metres of hardwoods, or over 18,000 full size 40’ containers. This represents a 20% increase over last year, and a record year for the Vietnamese, Malaysian, and Philippines markets. By Tripp Pryor, International Program Manager, American Hardwood Export Council its booming furniture export sector and increased use of wood flooring. Vietnam, like most of Southeast Asia, is a tulipwood heavy market. However, many in the region use tulipwood simply as a direct price competitor to regional species like rubber wood and acacia. In reality, tulipwood is one of the best performing woods in the world in terms of strength- to-weight ratio and is easy to machine and glue. The market for tulipwood continues to grow at a rapid pace, and is supported by the Asianmanufacturerswho have come to understand that tulipwood is more than a low-cost substitute. TheAmericanHardwood Export Council remains committed to growing the profile andmarket share of U.S. hardwoods around the world from our offices in Hong Kong, Osaka, Dubai, London, Mexico City and our headquarters in Washington DC. We look forward to supporting the trade in 2018 and beyond through trade shows, design projects, events, market reports and honest advice. Tripp Pryor, International Program Manager, American Hardwood Export Council Tulipwood Figure 1 shows the export value for the top four American hardwood species exported to Southeast Asia for the last three years.