Technical wood

Wood … sustained demand in Europe

Sustainability – for Europe’s timber industry this has long been more than just a declaration of intent. It has become a central criterion in the purchasing process, and for more and more customers it is now a fixed requirement of their wood products. And law-makers at both national and European level have set strict criteria as to the origin of imported timber – as, for instance, in the European Timber Regulation (EUTR). The EUTR requires anyone supplying timber or timber products for the first time on the EU market to assess the potential risks related to the products (origin, species, etc.) and mitigate those risks if necessary. 

Nowadays practically all European forestry businesses and wood processing companies have subscribed to a voluntary, independent certification system, thus acknowledging the principles and criteria of responsible forest management. The most important criteria are reforestation and socially responsible, sustainable use of forests. Paramount among international certifications are the PEFC and Forest Stewardship Council (FSC®). 

Your tropical woods from Peru

In Europe and the rest of the world, the demand for tropical wood is concentrated on a small number of species such as mahogany, teak, bangkirai and meranti. The popularity of these woods has led to intense exploitation of these resources as well as rising prices. It is not only for sustainability reasons that a growing number of less familiar and lesser used tropical woods are becoming the main focus of economic interest. This opens new opportunities for wood companies from Peru. With their good weathering properties, Peruvian tropical hardwoods are especially suitable for exterior uses such as decking and garden furniture. This is why these woods are very popular in rainy Northern, Western and Eastern Europe.

Sustainability certification such as FSC® is now crucial if you want to export your tropical woods to Europe. You are not FSC® certified yet? The IPD will support you in this process if you fulfil our criteria - thus smoothing your path to the European markets.

Your light woods from Indonesia

Timber exporters from Indonesia, too, have increasing good prospects on the European market. The light, fast-growing woods from this island state satisfy customers’ demands for an environmentally friendly and quickly renewable resource. Lightweight wood products from Indonesia are also much sought-after because of their particular material properties when used as a composite product in combination with tropical wood varieties. Whether in furniture or interior construction, wood from Indonesia is in great demand in Europe.

Your bamboo and teak products from Colombia and Ecuador

Bamboo has been increasingly used as a substitute for tropical timber in the European market. Value-added bamboo products are becoming popular due to their characteristics of durability and strength, which resemble the qualities of tropical wood, thus providing an interesting alternative. As natural teak resources are becoming scarce, plantation teak products have become an option for European timber traders.

The Import Promotion Desk will support you on your way to the European market.

Your contact persons

Frank Maul (Berlin)

Sourcing + Markets
Sustainable Wood Products 
(Colombia, Indonesia, Ukraine)

Thomas Derstadt (Bonn)

Sourcing + Markets
Fresh Fruit and Vegetables
(Côte d’Ivoire, Ghana)
Sustainable Wood Products (Ecuador, Peru)



Trainings in Europe

Sales training at trade fairs

Achieve new contacts to potential buyers in the EU.
Make your sales talks effective and successful.
Generate sustainable profits.

These are the goals of face-to-face contact at an international trade fairs.
But how to negotiate with potential European buyers and tour operators? How to present your products and services attractively in a short time during a meeting? How to master difficult dialogues? What are the business practices in Europe concerning communication, understanding of time, social manners and negotiation strategies?

In order to be well prepared for those issues, the IPD organizes sales trainings for exporters and tour operators participating in the IPD programme.
Those specialized trainings provide companies from our partner countries with the skills, concepts and methods which will help to influence the decisions of the counterparts and enhance the prospects of the trade fair participation.

The IPD experts will equip you with different tools and techniques to present your products and services to European buyers in a way that they will be familiar with – so that intercultural differences will not have a negative influence on your business talks. 

During the trade fair, you can put your newly acquired skills into practice. For this, IPD experts accompany pre-arranged meetings with potential business partners and give direct feedback. With this preparation, business with European buyers run smoothly and without any trouble.

Do you operate in one of the five sectors in our partner countries? And would you like to participate in the IPD programme? To enter the selection process, please contact us.


Product Fact Sheets

Product Fact Sheet

Tropical timber doors and frames for Germany (provided by CBI)

Tropical timber doors and frames are a popular product group in Germany and can provide opportunities to exporters in developing countries. Despite the economic downturn, doors and frames that incorporate added value through sustainability certification, unique design and competitive pricing, will be a top consumer preference.

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Product Fact Sheet

Value-added bamboo products in Europe (provided by CBI)

Bamboo has been increasingly used as a substitute for tropical timber in the European market. Value-added bamboo products are becoming popular due to their characteristics of durability and strength, which resemble the qualities of tropical wood, while providing a more sustainable alternative. The European market offers great opportunities to exporters from developing countries and it is recommended that they focus on competitive prices and sustainability certifications.

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Product Fact Sheet

Decking in Germany (provided by CBI)

Despite the economic recession, the German market for tropical timber decking remains stable, providing great opportunities for exporters in developing countries (DCs). Exporters need to be innovative and promote the natural features of their product, especially as the legal requirements implemented are complicating imports of tropical timber in Europe. Nevertheless, tropical timber decking is popular among German consumers who appreciate its aesthetic and durability features.

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Product Fact Sheet

Certified tropical timber garden furniture (provided by CBI)

The UK is a very important EU market for certified tropical timber garden furniture, providing several opportunities for exporters in developing countries (DCs). In order to optimise such opportunities, obtaining sustainability certifications and engaging in long-term relationships with your buyers in the UK is essential. Additionally, with the constrained supply of currently popular species, such as Teak and Mahogany, future prospects lie in marketing the beneficial properties of lesser known, alternative tropical timber species.

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Success Stories

Success Story

Tropical timber from sustainably managed forests


The tropical rainforest is at risk from overexploitation and fire clearance, and this has brought trading in tropical timber into disrepute. Timber companies from countries like Peru therefore encounter difficulties in exporting their tropical wood products to the EU market. They are supported by the Import Promotion Desk (IPD), the precondition being that their timber is verifiably sourced from legal and sustainable forestry. Maderacre Rio Acre SAC is a company that meets the criteria of the FSC, demonstrating in practice that responsible forest management can help to protect the rainforest.

Success Story

Legal and sustainable tropical timber from Peru

The Import Promotion Desk (IPD) and its partners in Peru support responsibly operating companies in their efforts to export certified timber products to Europe. An essential part of IPD’s work is to create awareness of European quality and sustainability standards in Peru’s private and public sectors. At the same time, the IPD provides German importers with an alternative buying market, which will allow them to optimise their purchasing activities and increase their product variety. In this way, international development cooperation and import promotion go hand in hand.

Sector information

Tecnical wood: broschure

Teak from South America – The Timber of the Kings

Characteristics and benefits

Technichal Wood: Flyer

Lightweight timber from Indonesia – an outstanding material

Characteristics and benefits


IPD Guide on successful trade fair participation

A survey conducted among business leaders in Germany revealed that 86% of all of them consider trade fairs as one of the most important tools in the sourcing and procurement process.1 For a simple reason: business is done between humans. People want to meet each other, see each other and get to know each other. Especially in a world that is characterised by growing digitalisation, real-life experiences make the difference.

Participation at a foreign trade fair is a not all that difficult. However, it requires good planning and meticulous execution. Especially for small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs), planning a participation at a foreign trade fair may be a daunting task.
This guide is intended to help SMEs approach this task successfully.

Technical Wood: Brochure

Commercial timber suppliers from Peru

It is widely known that the Amazon rainforest is one of the most diverse tropical forest ecosystems in the world, hosting several hundred timber tree species. However, the over-exploitation of only a few commercially valuable species - mainly driven by restricted consumer demand - has imposed severe pressure on the forests. Reducing the market pressure over this small group of commercial timber species is a major challenge for forest concessionaires, who strive to manage their forests in a responsible yet economically
viable manner. Several lesser used timber species - some of them already being traded at local market level - often hold similar physical features and mechanical properties as internationally known commercial species.
On behalf of the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ), Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH and the Import Promotion Desk (IPD) have joined efforts in
Peru. Together with the national export promotion agency PromPerú and the Peruvian Trade Office in Hamburg, a set of promising lesser used timber species for the German market have been identified together with Peruvian forest companies producing these species in a responsible and sustainable manner.
To promote these species and companies within the German market, data sheets have been developed that describe the characteristics and applications of 10 lesser used timber species from Peru. This brochure presents a contact list of Peruvian suppliers offering these timber species.

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