New Energy villas is a new development in Jiangsu province

B.C. wood moves up China’s value chain

Forest Minister Steve Thomson's annual trade mission visits resort community in Jiangsu province using wood frame construction

When B.C.’s wood products trade mission visited Nanjing, China five years ago, government and industry representatives watched lumber being hauled by labourers with ropes onto the roofs of a vast expanse of concrete apartment buildings.

Trusses were built using hammers and handsaws, to replace thousands of roofs damaged by the deadly 2008 Sichuan earthquake. Builders were pleased with the new method, which replaced angle iron pulled up to the roofs and welded into trusses.

When B.C.’s annual delegation returned to Nanjing this Thanksgiving weekend for its annual Asia sales trip, Forests Minister Steve Thomson said the roof reconstruction work continues. But now wood construction has become more sophisticated in Jiangsu Province, a centre of electronics and other industries whose gross domestic product is half as much as all of Canada.

“They’re doing residential properties, they’re also doing recreational properties, the villas, planned communities,” Thomson said in a phone interview from Nanjing Oct. 11.

Thomson also met with executives of Sinar Mas, the Indonesian conglomerate that has invested heavily in B.C.’s wood pulp industry through its Richmond-based subsidiary Paper Excellence.

The B.C. delegation toured the world’s largest paper mill, which uses all of the production from Mackenzie Pulp in northern B.C. and most of Howe Sound Pulp and Paper. Paper Excellence also owns the pulp mill in Skookumchuck in the Kootenays, and this spring it purchased the former Tembec pulp mill in Chetwynd that has been shut down since 2012.

The annual lumber trade mission is required by B.C. legislation. Thomson said the next stop in Beijing is for his first meetings with national-level Chinese officials, before the group heads to Tokyo and Seoul, South Korea.

Lumber purchases to China have risen steadily in the past decade, with sales surpassing the U.S. for the first time in 2011.

 

Just Posted

Record cherry crop anticipated

BC Tree Fruit growers expecting crop of 12 million pounds due to ideal conditions

Declining mule deer tracked in new study

Wildlife research collaborators join forces on research initiative

B.C. Interior flood risk diminishing

Snowmelt receding but rainfall impact remains a concern

Plea to help find missing dog in Kelowna

Willow has been missing since Sunday near Dee Lake Resort

Driver flees scene after colliding with pedestrian

Kelowna RCMP continue their investigation after a driver allegedly failed to remain at the scene

Black Press Media to launch Pipeline Full of Controversy series

Series covers Trans Mountain’s history, science, Indigenous reaction, politics and economics

Referendum in Ireland would repeal strict ban on abortion

Voters throughout Ireland have begun casting votes in a referendum that may lead to a loosening of the country’s strict ban on most abortions.

Lava from Hawaii volcano enters ocean from 3 flows

The Kilauea volcano has been gushing lava on the big island of Hawaii for the past three weeks.

Summit talk turns warmer; Trump says ‘talking to them now’

North Korea issued a statement saying it was still “willing to give the U.S. time and opportunities” to reconsider talks

Harvey Weinstein turns himself in, arraigned on rape, criminal charges

Harvey Weinstein arraigned on rape, criminal sex act charges following allegations of sexual misconduct

Explosion at Mississauga restaurant sends 15 to hospital

Hunt underway for two suspects connected to Mississauga, Ont., blast

Crews fight small wildfire between Malakwa and Revelstoke

The blaze is classed as active and is estimated at 4 hectares in size

B.C. pipeline goes ahead despite scrapped Pacific Northwest LNG

NEB approves amendment for $1.4-billion natural gas North Montney Mainline Project

Update: Wildfire northwest of Kamloops jumps from 60 to 800 hectares

Ground crews and aircraft are responding to an estimated 50 hectare wildfire approximately 55 kilometers northwest of Kamloops, near the Deadman Vidette Road.

Most Read