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The Estonian Forest and Wood Industries’


The Estonian Forest and Wood Industries Association represents the core of Estonian forest and wood industry companies. Members of the association are responsible for the lion's share of the output of Estonia's wood industries and the resulting GDP. They take pride in upholding the quality of Estonian timber products and aspire to be exemplary partners to their clients by maintaining high ethical standards in their business sector. Members of the association are primarily exportoriented manufacturing companies whose product range is well in line with the market's demand. Clients having any additional requests or questions will always be offered the best solutions. The interest of the member companies of the association is long-established, their supply terms are professional and flexible. To best serve clients, customer-based solutions are sought and found in product development and in the assembly of individual orders before delivery. For more information on these enterprises please visit: www.estoniantimber.ee


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Estonia is a Northern European country. Its territory covers 45,227 km2 and the largest city is the capital, Tallinn. The Republic of Estonia is a parliamentary democracy. With a population of 1.29 million, Estonia is among the smallest EU countries. In the interwar period, Estonia was a member of the League of Nations (joined 22 September 1921), and following the Soviet period, became a member of the United Nations on 17 September 1991. On 1 May 2004, Estonia acceded to the European Union. Estonia is also a member of the OSCE, WTO, NATO, Schengen area and Eurozone, and has signed the Kyoto Protocol, an international treaty aimed at globally reducing greenhouse gas emissions. The majority of the country’s population are native Estonians (69%), the largest minority are Russians (25%).

Estonian timber products are well known in world markets—members of the association have established sales arrangements on all continents. Estonia has always served as a gateway between the East and the West and been a busy trading ground since the Early Middle Ages. Although Estonia is a small country, we have a long coastline and numerous ports that can be used to ship goods to any place in the world. Estonia has some of the most northern ports that are kept ice-free year-round. 5

Enjoying the smoke sauna

Estonian culture combines heritage with cultural trends of Nordic and other European countries. Throughout its history, Estonia has been exposed to cultural influences from all directions. Among the most notable Estonian traditions is the sauna which still holds a place of great importance in modern society. As decided at the meeting of the UNESCO Intergovernmental Committee for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage in November 2014, the V천romaa (V천ru County) smoke sauna 6

traditions are now part of the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. In January 2015, the first office building constructed according to green building design in Estonia was erected on S천pruse Boulevard in Tallinn. Its ground source heat pump that employs 65 underground energy piles and unique protective solar screens on windows, ensure up to 50% energy savings used either for wintertime heating or summertime cooling.

Estonia has a transparent legislation system and a liberal economic policy. Economic freedom, great ratings in terms of the ease of doing business in the country, per capita investment, record-low national debt, membership of the Eurozone, and low corruption index—are all factors that show that there is something about Estonia that is worth taking a closer look at. The Estonian working culture sets high standards for both products and the people behind the products, which naturally yields high quality products and top class services. Special emphasis is on the flexibility and smooth flow of the process. Estonia's remarkable economic freedom endows Estonian companies with a competitive edge on the global market, as they can offer very good quality/price ratio and an individual approach to each client. When competing as a small country on the huge global market, in addition to quality, attention must be paid to efficiency, which is achieved largely thanks to various information and communication technologies that are systematically implemented at all levels, including communication with various government agencies.

Tornimäe business area (Tallinn)

Green building office on SĂľpruse Boullevard (Tallinn)


The Estonian environment is rich and diverse—from long strips of sandy beaches to deep forests and numerous moors, our nature offers visitors fantastic views and experiences. Estonia lies on the borderline of northern coniferous and southern deciduous forests. We have vast forests that are perfect for nature tourism and can provide refuge from the hectic pace of modern life. Many of Estonia’s forests are in pristine condition and offer rich possibilities for picking mushrooms, wild berries and other plants and herbs that can be used for food or medicine. The Estonian people have always had a deep connection with nature and especially the forest. That knowledge and the habit of going to the woods for peace of mind and clean, healthy food are still widespread.


Estonia Greece Finland Slovakia Italy Croatia Cyprus Bulgaria Lithuania Denmark Netherlands Slovenia Czech Republic Poland Sweden Latvia Hungary Belgium France 0%

10 %

Estonia has the first share of strictly-protected (MCPFE class 1.1. – total biodiversity conservation) forests in Europe

Estonia is a land of forests. We hold third place among European countries in terms of the volume of standing timber per capita, making forestry and wood processing the most important industries in Estonia. At the same time, the Estonian forests are among the most protected in Europe. A total of 25% our forests enjoy some form of protection, while 10% of forests are under strict protection. Estonian cultivated forests are semi-natural communities which, in addition to being a source of timber, play an important role for ecotourism, hiking and camping, and as a venue for foraging. 9

Total area



million ha


Forest land


of total area

Growing stock

470 m3

of forest land PEFC

Estonian state forests are all FSC® and PEFC certified. In private forests, the certification process is still underway and the total area of certified private forests grows each year. Both FSC and PEFC standards are used for the certification of the products of Estonian wood industry companies. The regulations governing forestry and timber trading in Estonia maintain very high requirements with regard to the verifiability of the origin of wood and timber, and the sustainability of Estonian forest management. Estonian forest and wood industries are characterised by two important keywords:  Long-standing tradition: timber products have historically been a very important export for Estonia and the wood industry has been the engine driving the Estonian economy. Estonian timber companies export a wide range of different product groups, among which the most prominent include dimensional timber, prefabricated structural details for homes and for furniture manufacturers, and modular buildings. The selection of exported products has improved over the last decade, and involves more and more products with higher added value. The strengths of the Estonian manufacturers include solutions tailor-made for particular customers, flexible sales and marketing arrangements.  Innovative and rapid development during the past 25 years. The so-called greenfield investments have played an important role in the development of the Estonian wood industry during the last decades, allowing it to become a high-tech industry that responds very well to the market's needs with regard to the quality of products and security of supply. 10


of forest land

Protection forest


of forest land

Forest reserve


of forest land

Wood based product export value 2014  1. Sawn and planed wood 19,3% 2. Components, including glulam, doors, windows 14,1% 3. Wooden furniture and parts thereof 14,0% 4. Wooden prefab houses 13,8% 5. Roundwood (primarily for pulp) 8,2% 6. Pellets 5.7% 7. Thermomechanical pulp 4,2% 8. Unbleached paper 3,0% 9. Veneer 2.4% 10. Chipboard 2,1% 11. Packaging, pallets 1,9% 12. Plywood 1,9% 13. Chips 1,5% 14. Fibreboard 1% 15. Other 6.8%

15. 13.

14. 1.

12. 11. 10. 9. 8.








Glue laminated beams from Arcwood, Tondiraba ice arena, Tallinn

Strengths of the Estonian forest and wood industries include: well-developed mechanical processing of wood and numerous greenfield investments: –– wood in our climatic zone is slowly grown and has excellent strength characteristics; –– production and further processing of sawn timber. In terms of per capita, the companies in Estonia do more further processing of lumber than anywhere else in the world; –– production of plywood and veneer; 12

–– production of prefabricated timber buildings. Estonia is Europe's leading exporter of timber buildings; –– production of glue laminated timber and impregnated wood products; wood fuel products: Estonia is the world's leading per capita producer of pellets and no. 2 exporter of pellets in Europe; important product groups in the production of cellulose: –– bleached chemi-thermomechanical pulp; –– virgin unbleached sack kraft paper.

Forest management and logging are dynamic and well-regulated business sectors in Estonia. A large share of tree cutting is done using machines. Less than a half of the forests are state owned and more than a half are privately owned. Forest management and logging are services that both private forest owners and state forest managers usually commission from private companies. The quality of forest management and logging is ensured by strict terms of procurement and high standards for work performance. The selection of valuable tree species is the most important var-

iable taken into account when planting future forests. Of the timber produced in Estonian forests, one third is cut up for mechanical processing, another third is used for cellulose and paper production and the final third is used as firewood. The share of renewable energy production and consumption is increasing well within the parameters established by the European Union. By 2020, renewable energy should account for 25% of energy consumption. Wood biomass takes up the largest share of various sources from which renewable energy is produced in Estonia. 13

Training in all aspects of forestry and timber technologies starts already in early childhood and continues throughout life. In cooperation with universities and companies, several exciting projects already aimed at preschool children have seen the light of day. Specialised vocational and higher education can be acquired at several universities and vocational education institutions. These include Tallinn University of Technology, the Estonian University of Life Sciences, Luua Forestry School and V천ru County Vocational Training Centre. 14

The Estonian Forest and Wood Industries Association organises the annual international conference on wood architecture in Tallinn. The conference brings together architects, engineers, builders, and wood architecture enthusiasts in general. Throughout the years, we have

hosted such eminent names in wood architecture as Gert Wing책rdh,Fabrizio Rossi Prodi, Kimmo Lintula, Much Untertrifaller, Matt Vaudin, Richard Harris, Andrew Waugh, as well as many others.


Production from RaitWood

Since the 1990s, Estonian sawmills and planing mills have undergone significant development. The production volume of finished dimensional timber, which in 1995 totalled 353,000 cubic metres, has now increased fivefold (1.69 million cubic metres in 2014). In terms of technology, Estonian sawmills and planing mills constitute a very rapidly and successfully developing industry that is characterised by the efficiency of manufacturing processes, a high level of automation and numerous IT applications. 16

Significant investments in the sawmill industry over the last years have been made in the technology of 3D scanning and positioning of logs, sorting of sawn timber and total process optimisation, as well as in improved productivity and product development. Further processing of timber has seen even more rapid development in recent years, which has significantly increased the added value of the products. The planing mills produce a diverse selection of products, such as planed all round wood, profile

Form-pessed components and furniture from Tarmeko LPD OĂœ.

boards, structural details for buildings, for window and door manufacturers and for furniture makers. In addition to their standard catalogues, most Estonian planing mills take custom orders. Estonia also produces superb glued laminated timber. Both large glued timber beams for buildings and lighter structural details for the furniture industry are manufactured. Well-developed sawmill and planing industry, and glued timber manufacturing provide an excellent basis for the production of prefabricated timber

buildings, which has undergone very rapid and extensive development in Estonia in the last decade. In order to ensure the highest quality, companies carry out regular testing of their products. In addition, products are also tested in accredited laboratories both in Estonia and abroad. The list of the manufacturers of sawn and planed timber can be found on the website www.estoniantimber.ee.


Estonian Cell pulp factory

There are only two pulp mills between the three Baltic countries, and they are both located in Estonia. Estonian Cell AS produces aspen based bleached chemi-thermomechanical pulp (BCTMP). All 100% of the company's output goes abroad. The company exports to Europe and Asia and is one of the leading BCTMP suppliers in the European market. Aspen BCTMP is dominantly used in upgraded coated/uncoated printing/writing paper products, offering technical advantages in end application and good production efficiency for manufacturers. BCTMP is also used for paperboard, tissue paper and specialty paper products. To provide an example, label paper is one of the most demanding ap18

plications where no other pulp grade can be used due to the need for high transparency. In this field, company has taken the lead among its competitors worldwide with several environmental and innovative technology implementations. Horizon Pulp and Paper Ltd. is an integrated pulp and paper mill that produces virgin long-fibre unbleached sack kraft paper. The company exports 99% of their output, offering paper for paper sacks, SOS bags, lamination, general wrapping, etc. All paper grades are produced from 100% virgin long-fibre softwood pulp, using the best raw material available for sack kraft papers窶年ordic pine and spruce.

Birch is the third most widely used wood in Estonia. It is mostly used in the production of plywood, glued laminated timber and furniture. Estonian plywood is used, for instance, in the containers of LNG carriers sailing the world's seas, which are required to withstand temperatures as low as –163°C. The collaborative effort of designers, product developers, and technology specialists allows Estonian companies to create glued, and bent veneer, and plywood products that will set new trends in the industry. Estonian birch veneer is of high repute among leading furniture manufacturers. Well-known plywood and veneer manufacturers include Kohila Vineer OÜ,

Tarmeko Spoon AS, UPM-Kymmene Otepää AS, Valmos OÜ.

At any given time, there are more than 370 carriers at sea transporting liquefied natural gas (LNG). More than half of these feature insulation elements made of birch plywood supplied by UPM.


Lemeks Group headquarters, Tartu

Estonian forestry and wood industry companies invest in their human resources and working environment. An example of this is the innovative new headquarters of the largest group of forestry and wood industry companies owned by Estonian investors. In order to improve the working environment and create architectural value, innovative timber products have been used in the 20

construction of the building. Relying on its time-honoured tradition of wood construction, complemented by modern technology, Estonia has become the leading exporter of timber buildings in Europe.

Graanul Invest, Osula pellet factory

Estonia produces both renewable energy, as well as various biomass-based wood fuel products, among which pellets are proportionally the most important item. The development in the production of wood pellets has advanced rapidly in recent years, making Estonia the largest producer and exporter of pellets among the Baltic countries. 21

The concert hall of the Heino Eller Music School boasts a beautiful interior and top-class acoustics. The hall is made special by a large glass wall, which gives it spaciousness and floods it with daylight. The tricky acoustics of glass is compensated by the dominant and skilful use of plywood. The result is a high-end concert hall, unique in the entire region, suitable to the needs of musicians of all calibres. 22

Roheline: PANTONE 348 C



www.estoniantimber.ee Viljandi mnt. 18 a, Tallinn 11216 Phone: +372 656 7643 E-mail: info@empl.ee