• News

Timber packaging imports in soft decline

  • Timber packaging import values declined 8.8% over the year to total AUD21.8 million
  • Among the specific grades, ‘pallet and load board’ imports lifted 14% to AUD6.1 million
  • The value of similar grades of plastic packaging imports rose 4.2 % over the same period but were valued at a large AUDFob206.7 million for the year-ended November


Imports falling – valued at AUD23.0 million, year-ended November

Imports of timber pallets and other packaging made from timber were valued at AUDFob23.000 million year-ended November 2023, up just 2.2% on the prior year. Unfortunately, import data is only available by value, with no volume data reported. The chart shows the value of imports on a monthly basis, and in total, on an aggregate basis.

Timber Packaging Imports by Grade: Jan ‘18 – Nov ’23 (AUDFob Million)

Source: ABS and IndustryEdge


The value of imports has returned to more typical levels on a month-on-month basis. We are advised that some packaging product prices have moderated however, suggesting there is more product being imported.

AUDFob Million Packing Cases, Boxes, Crates and Drums Pallets and Load Boards Total
YE Nov ’22 $18,559,377 $5,384,381 $23,943,758
YE Nov ’23 $15,730,163 $6,111,095 $21,841,259
% Change -15.2% 13.5% -8.8%


Though a surprise, over the year-ended November, Australia’s imports of timber packaging continued to be led by Bahrain, whose share of the market was 31%, totalling AUDFob6.6 million.

Timber Packaging Imports by Country Jan ‘20– Nov ’23 (AUDFob)

Source: ABS and IndustryEdge

AUDFob Bahrain Brazil China (Mainland) Germany New Zealand Turkiye Other
YE Nov ’22 $7,247,661 $549,893 $6,769,207 $1,036,332 $2,237,984 $2,005,560 $2,661,392
YE Nov ’23 $7,500,220 $1,204,595 $6,089,418 $1,352,688 $2,867,890 $1,360,474 $2,625,146
% Change 3.5% 119.1% -10.0% 30.5% 28.1% -32.2% -1.4%
Proportion (%) 32.6% 5.2% 26.5% 5.9% 12.5% 5.9% 11.4%


Plastic equivalents up 4.2% year-ended October

‘Plastic’ equivalents for timber pallets and related materials saw imports rise 4.2% to AUDFob206.742 million over the year-ended November 2023. This packaging material is specifically pallets, cases, crates and boxes. No other plastics are included, so these are the closest approximation we can provide of timber packaging.

Plastic Packaging Imports by Grade: Jan ‘20 – Nov ’23 (AUDFob Million)

Source: ABS and IndustryEdge

AUDFob Million Plastic Styrene & PVC Ethylene & Polyethylene Other Plastics Total
YE Nov ’22 $9,687,205 $4,707,509 $78,691,393 $105,304,832 $198,390,939
YE Nov ’23 $9,900,950 $3,472,967 $90,404,355 $102,963,670 $206,741,943
% Change 2.2% -26.2% 14.9% -2.2% 4.2%


Posted Date: February 7, 2024

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