By 2013, China will account for
41% of the world's MDF
production.
-- BIS Shrapnel

MELBOURNE, AUSTRALIA - An increasingly positive global economic outlook and strong growth in housing demand will drive renewed growth for medium density fiberboard over the four years from 2010 to 2013, according to economic forecaster and industry analyst, BIS Shrapnel.

BIS Shrapnel’s “Medium Density Fiberboard in the Pacific Rim and Europe, 2009–2013” report forecasts strong growth in the key end-use sectors for MDF – housing construction and furniture manufacturing. In addition, BIS Shrapnel said the downturn in housing construction in the United States reached the bottom of the cycle in 2009 and is expected to move into a rapid upswing from 2010 to 2013. “

The recovery in the U.S. will drive economic growth not only in that region but also in many of its key trading partners around the world,” said BIS Shrapnel Senior Manager Bernie Neufeld, author of the report. “It will also drive improved demand for furniture, and ultimately demand for MDF. Housing construction in other key regions such as Europe and Asia will also drive up demand for MDF from 2010 to 2013.”

“Over the next five years producers will need to respond during the upturn with improvements in quality, and the development of new products and new markets,” Neufeld said. “There is potential for MDF to be used more extensively in many applications such as flooring, zero-rated formaldehyde emission MDF, MDF panels in place of plywood panels, and applications requiring fire and water rated MDF.”

BIS Shrapnel forecasts consumption of MDF to grow at an average rate of about 5% per year over the five-year period 2009 to 2013. Production, therefore, is expected to increase from 60.9 million cubic meters in 2009 to 76 million cubic meters in 2013, based on current expansion plans and estimated capacity utilization rates. By 2013, the report states North Asia will be producing 45% of the world’s MDF, and China alone will be producing 41%

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