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  • Writer's picturerosandyrendy

Indonesian Timber Business Explained

Cutting trees.

The world timber business is on its edge, being said as the future "sunset" industry. From my perspective its evolving into a whole different form, with the target market also shrinking and slowly becoming niche. So many Indonesian mills and factories gone out of business in the past few years, with the next generation exiting the business, reluctant to take the reigning helmet from their parents. So whats the business like now?

Here's what I know from being in the business for 8 years.

Raw Materials.

This is the sole most important factor in the business, as this determines what product your company is focusing on. As you may know there are hundreds, if not thousands, of different wood species. Kalimantan, Papua and Sulawesi are the main source of giant forestry, and this is mainly where we get our material. Round logs, square logs, sawn timber are being traded with millions of dollars trafficking every day. But beware if you dont know your way around, the crooks and scammers lurk waiting to prey.

The industrial process.


Woodworking industry can be roughly divided into 5 main parts :

- Sawmill

- Kiln-Dry (Oven)

- Moulding / Profiling / Rotary

- Assembly

- Finishing / Coating

Most of these processes are in Java, as the central of industry of Indonesia. Outputs vary on each process, some of them reaching around 40,000 cubic metres per year per mill.

The business.

Point of Sales.

Timber businessmen usually have their own point of sales, where it can be round logs, veneers, plywoods, rough sawn timber, dry sawn timber, profiled mouldings, floors, decks, doors and many other products. Domestic market usually absorbs the wood used in building material, while also absorbing some finished products. Exports on the other hand, only deals with finished products, as restricted by the government to improve industries all over the country.

The buyers consists of projects, importers, trader-importers, lumber yards, shop owners and other mills.

At the moment that is what I want to share and will definitely update along with my own journey.


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