Just a few days after the coming in force of Emergency Ordinance No. 134/2022 which caps the price of heating wood materials, firewood, pellets and briquettes are out of the large retailers’ offer, the Wood Industry Association – Prolemn cautions, according to Agerpres.
A survey conducted by the said organization in cooperation with the Foresters Community – Fordaq, shows that 93 percent of the companies in the industry consider that their activity will be seriously affected, directly and indirectly. Also, over 70 percent of the companies estimate that there will be a shortage in the market, particularly in plain areas located far away from the wood resource, and the energy security of the most vulnerable communities will be affected.
The survey reveals that companies along the entire wood distribution chain will apply various measures to offset the effects of Ordinance No. 134/2022.
Thus, 44 percent of the respondents declared that they will invoice firewood subjected to the price cap separately from transport, storage, splitting, palletizing, distribution services. Given that the VAT for firewood is 5 percent and that for services is 19 percent, the final price paid by households for the same product (split, palletized, distributed firewood) will increase by 7 – 10 percent, the industry professionals estimate.
22 percent of the suppliers mentioned that they will sell the wood as unsorted round wood, for which the VAT is 19 percent, resulting in a direct increase of 14 percent in the prices for the population.
Furthermore, 16 percent of the companies said that they will terminate their wood exploitation contracts, 11 percent will terminate supply contracts, 18 percent said that they will stop producing firewood, 29 percent said that they will store products until the ordinance is amended, and 30 percent said that they will increase their exports to limit losses on the domestic market.
Prolemn data shows that Romania commercially harvests only 33 percent of forest growth, compared to a European average of 67 percent, with a forest harvest index below 3 cubic metres per year and hectare, far behind other European countries.