Analysis of the Chinese Rosewood Trade and Links to Illegal Activity in Tropical Forested CountriesBy Naomi Basik Treanor - Forest Trends View Publication
China’s demand for rosewood – used for classical Chinesestyle furniture and décor – is threatening some of the world’s most valuable and endangered old-growth forests. Chinese furniture manufacturers’ imports of several species of rosewood, collectively known as hongmu, have soared at an unprecedented rate since 2010 and hit an all-time high in 2014, according to China’s customs data and reported in a new study by Forest Trends, an international non-profit organization. This trade is fueling illegal harvesting of rosewood in the last remaining forests of Southeast Asia and, increasingly, Africa.
As the largest global consumer of rosewood, China has seen the volume of its imports increase 1,250 percent since 2000. From 2013 to 2014 alone, the value of these imported rosewood nearly doubled, reaching US$2.6 billion.
Figure. Comparison of China’s Rosewood Log and Sawnwood Imports and Rosewood Furniture Exports
SELECT MEDIA COVERAGE
- China’s demand for rosewood is destroying forests in Southeast Asia and, increasingly, in Africa – Mongabay
- Rosewood exports down – The Phnom Penh Post
- Is China’s Demand For Rosewood Turning Africa’s Forests Into Furniture? – Ecosystem Marketplace
- Forests threatened by rise in demand for timber in China – Radio Free Asia [Khmer]
- Nigeria, others export N650bn rosewood – New Telegraph
- Countries call for new CITES protections for rosewood species– Mongabay
- Countries move to stop illicit Asian rosewood trade – Climate Home
RELATED MEDIA COVERAGE
- Thailand’s forest rangers step up training in violent ‘blood wood’ war – The Guardian
- Rosewood bust at Tbong Khmum pepper field – The Phnom Penh Post
- Madagascar continue de fermer les yeux sur le trafic du bois de rose – Le Monde [French]