Fepama presents a forest development plan and plans to export USD 100 million this year

Asunción, Agencia IP.- Representatives of the Paraguayan Federation of Lumbermen (Fepama) presented a strategic plan for forest-industrial development to the Minister of Industry and Commerce, Javier Giménez. The sector aims to surpass the barrier of USD 100 million in exports in 2024.

Rodrigo Legal, president of Fepama, stated, «2023 was an interesting year. We had a certain fluctuation in exports, but we hope that in 2024, we will start to recover the export levels we are accustomed to and surpass USD 100 million. This year, we aim to exceed the figure again as we did in 2022, reaching around USD 110 million.»

Legal pointed out that markets are active, although less dynamic than at other times. He argued that the guild works within about 50 small markets, including Asian and, most importantly, American and European markets.

The guild currently comprises 80 small and medium-sized companies as direct members, which, when combined with other lumber associations from the interior, totals around 150 affiliated companies.

Fepama’s director described the meeting with the Minister of Industry and Commerce and the Vice Minister of Rediex, Rodrigo Maluff, as excellent. He stated that the opportunity was seized to inform them about the activities being carried out by the guild. He maintained that the proposal is not precisely for new legislation for the forestry sector, although perhaps for «some adjustments» to the rules and regulatory decrees.

Interest in Paraguay

Legal recalled that there is a lot of interest in Paraguay from large investors, so it is necessary to have an appropriate tool that indicates the way forward in the forestry sector.

They agreed that the next step would be to diagnose the sector and establish a joint working group in which the Investment and Export Network (REDIEX) will participate.

Legal indicated that the plan presented to the MIC authorities contains, among other things, projections for this year, the numbers that the sector can generate showing its potential, the amount of employment it can create, and the foreign exchange it can generate for the country.

«The forestry sector has great potential, but we need to coordinate actions because there are aspects we need to unlock, such as financing for plantations and the renewal of the industrial park, which is outdated and needs to be adjusted to modern times. That’s why we presented a summary to explain what it consists of, what the objectives are, and what we hope to achieve with it,» Legal added.