In November, Canada Wood China presented its approach to developing alternative markets for lumber to its first group of VIP guests, Canadian Senators Terry M. Mercer, Jean-Guy Dagenais, Raymonde Gagné, Victor Oh, Claudette Tardif, Pana Merchant and Ghislain Maltais.
The delegation was particularly interested in the opportunity to profile wood as a green building material in China as well as Canada Wood’s work in developing building codes and standards. The implication of the outcome of the Softwood Lumber Agreement (between Canada and the United States) will have on Chinese exports was also of interest.
Other discussion points included:
- Market development initiatives produce significant benefits for Canada
- Reduced dependency on the U.S.
- Expanding market share in China, Japan and Korea
- Develop government relationships with partners like MOHURD in China. (High-level political support is particularly important in China, where government endorsement can bring legitimacy to new product or technology.)
- Public-private partnership
- Canada (NRCan), British Columbia (BCFII) and industry to be part of the model
The Canada Wood China team also hosted Honorable Minister Oneil Carlier, currently responsible for Agriculture and Forestry.
His delegation was particularly interested in understanding China’s construction market and opportunities to expand wood use in a country dominated by steel and concrete.
They also discussed opportunities for collaboration with the province of Alberta. The outcome of the Softwood Lumber Agreement with Canada would have an impact on the current export of Canadian lumber to China.