Forestry Innovation Investment (FII) has set up a new office in Vietnam to drive trade opportunities and sustainable jobs in British Columbia’s (BC) forestry sector while offering greater protection from market volatility and other global challenges.
According to a press release by Forestry Innovation Investment, the office is a key first step in developing BC’s Trade Diversification Strategy, part of the StrongerBC Economic Plan.
The strategy will allow businesses to connect with more international partners, creating more jobs in BC and helping to protect BC’s trade network from supply-chain disruption, market instability and geographically specific trends and changes.
“The pandemic and global unrest have shown us the impact these events can have on our economy and trade relationships with global partners,” said Ravi Kahlon, Canadian Minister of Jobs, Economic Recovery and Innovation. “By moving away from over-reliance on a single market, we can grow revenue for sustainable BC businesses and jobs and protect British Columbians from global disruptions.”
The Trade Diversification Strategy will help increase opportunities to export BC products and services, including value-added wood products, and attract foreign investment to support BC businesses and workers.
With the majority of forest products destined for export markets, diversification can help protect BC’s forestry sector from ups and downs in the global marketplace.
As part of this strategy, the province is establishing its third international FII office, its first in Vietnam, in the province of Binh Duong. The office will focus on ensuring BC is the preferred supplier of sustainable and certified softwood lumber products to Vietnam, which is the world’s second-largest exporter of wooden furniture.
From 2017 to 2021, BC softwood lumber exports to Vietnam increased by 59%. Recently, Vietnam has increased its emphasis on using certified sustainable sources – a requirement of increasingly more countries and large companies. FII reports that establishing this new office puts BC’s forestry sector in a strong position to further expand trade relationships with Vietnam.