Canada exported 781,083 mt of wood pellets in the first half of 2015, nudging up 1% on the year-earlier period, as increased deliveries to the UK offset declines in shipments from Italy and South Korea, according to Statistics Canada data Monday.
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The country's H1 pellet exports to the UK -- Canada's largest customer for the fuel -- were 587,205 mt, up 26% on the year.
Exports to Italy in the six-month period declined 62% on the year to 42,799 while those to South Korea fell 47% to 33,221 mt.
Sources said weak demand in the residential heating pellet market explained the on-year fall in Italian deliveries, while the drop in Canadian shipments of industrial pellets to South Korea was attributed to stiffer competition from local Asian suppliers such as Vietnam and Malaysia.
The US remained the second-largest destination for Canadian pellets, taking delivery of 90,288 mt in H1, up from 87,945 mt in the corresponding 2014 period.
Total Canadian pellet exports in June were 128,403, 5% higher on the year but 8% lower than May. Of this amount, 97,326 mt were shipped to the UK, up 39% on a year earlier but 12% lower than May.