Bulgaria's lumber industry has started to overcome the effects of the economic crisis but the furniture manufacturing is still declining, according to participants in the "World of Furniture" expo in Sofia.
Georgi Kostov, Deputy Agriculture Minister and head of the State Forestry Agency, said Bulgaria's state budget revenues from the lumber industry in the state-owned forest plots will amount to BGN 60 M in 2010.
Bulgaria extracts about 4 million cubic meters of lumber per year, and most of that goes for exports to Turkey and Iraq which are seeing a boom of construction; at the same time, the Bulgarian furniture industry takes up only 1 million cubic meters of timber annually, according to the Bulgarian Chamber for Woodworking and Furniture Industries.
Yet, in the past 2-3 months, the volume of furniture production has started to increase slightly, according to Kalin Simeonov, Chair of the Chamber.
Bulgaria's furniture production is expected to slump by 10% in 2010, which is an improvement considering the shock decline of 20% in 2009. The major reason for that is the reduced domestic consumption.
"The good news is that the export is on the rise," Simeonov said. In his words, the recovery of the Bulgarian furniture industry could be expected in about six months.