Now no trace of restraint in purchasing in North Africa
Suppliers say demand from the softwood lumber markets in North Africa and the Middle East was satisfactory at the beginning of the year despite comparatively high delivery volumes in November/December. Central European and Scandinavian shippers registered numerous requests for prompt deliveries in the early weeks of the new year as well as enquiries about contracts for major volumes with terms until the end of the first quarter. This enabled a variety of follow-on contracts to be agreed by the end of January to the extent that shippers are already talking of what they consider to be satisfactory start to the year. Shortly before the turn of the year, North African importers in particular had still been very reluctant to conclude follow-on contracts for deliveries for early months of this year.