Russia Seeks Belarus Alliance for Biofuels & Timber Production

Komi, is Russia's second largest state and is home to Europe's largest virgin forest. Prior to the Ukraine War, 30% of its economy was connected to timber production

Wed 06 Dec 23


As global leaders meet at COP28 to discuss the international carbon market, Russia and Belarus – two countries subject to severe trade sanctions – are establishing new supply chains through Eurasia.

Last week, members of Russia and the Belarussian governments met in Gordno, in Western Belarus, “to cooperate on forest management, reforestation and wood processing.”

The meetings are part of a regular dialogue between the two countries as both countries navigate strict trade sanctions imposed by the West.

Following the departure of Western Companies, Russia has turned to Belarus, China, South Korea and the Middle East to replace relationships with “unfriendly economies.”

The Russian republic of Komi, just west of the Ural Mountains, is home to some of Europe’s last old-growth forests – footage courtesy of @dwnews.

The latest meetings were attended by Vladimir Uiba, the Governor of Komi, Russia’s second-largest state and home to the Virgin Komi Forests – a UNESCO World Heritage Site and the largest virgin forest in Europe.

Last month, Wood Central revealed that Governor Uiba was working with Shanghai trading companies to boost the region’s trade with China – which now stands at 85% of all Russian sawn-wood exports.

According to Governor Uiba, the meetings raise “the possibility for Russia and Belarus to supply our engineering products and cooperate in humanitarian matters”. 

He said, “Despite the post-pandemic legacy, trade is on the growth track, both in terms of imports and exports from the Republic of Belarus to the Komi Republic.”

Komi has been amongst the hardest hit Russian states by the EU sanctions imposed on Russian forest products entering European markets, with timber production accounting for 30% of the local economy.

“For us, as a republic with a very high percentage of timber processing, it is essential to switch to logging equipment from the Republic of Belarus,” he said. 

“Until now, we imported all the equipment from the now unfriendly countries. It is crucial for us that this industry works seamlessly.”


  • Jason Ross

    Jason Ross, publisher, is a 15-year professional in building and construction, connecting with more than 400 specifiers. A Gottstein Fellowship recipient, he is passionate about growing the market for wood-based information. Jason is Wood Central's in-house emcee and is available for corporate host and MC services.


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