A five-day BC forestry “mission” to Japan begins on Sunday. Led by Bruce Ralston, the Minister of Forests, members of the forestry sector are headed East to “[showcase] the innovation of B.C. wood products.” “Japan is a long-standing market for B.C. forest products with new opportunities for B.C.’s high-value lumber and manufactured wood products, such as mass timber,” Ralston said. “The demand for wood building material is growing, and the sustainability and innovation in B.C.’s forestry sector makes it globally recognized as one of the best options to choose from.” Ralston’s party includes other members of the Ministry of Forests, First Nations delegates, and representatives from forestry companies According to the ministry, while the delegates are in Japan, they will:
  • Tour Japan’s first fully wooden and fire-resistant highrise
  • Visit the Tokyo showroom of Mihashi
  • Attend multiple market session forums
  • and Ralston will meet with Japan’s Ministry of Land, Infrastructure, Transportation and Tourism and the Japan Forestry Agency.
“First Nations in B.C. have established significant forestry partnerships in business and governance, not only within Canada but also on a global scale,” Terry Teegee, Regional Chief, British Columbia Assembly of First Nations said in the release. “The association with the Japanese forestry market presents numerous valuable prospects for First Nation forest products and knowledge exchange. Moreover, this collaboration can benefit international commitments, including the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples – Articles 20 and 32, and sustainable development goals. First Nations in B.C. hold significant fibre supply and decision-making authorities that can ensure that our wood products maintain high value in the Japanese market.” “Japan is a long-standing, high-value market for B.C. forest products with common commitments to sustainable forest practices and building healthy, resilient communities using Canadian wood products,” said Kevin Pankratz, Canfor’s senior vice-president, sales and marketing. “It’s important for us to be there and to show we are committed to supplying sustainably harvested forest products into the future.” The Ministry said BC sold Japan $1.45 billion worth of forestry products in 2022. You can read more about their journey here.

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