Rapidly escalating land prices in Brazil and Uruguay force timberland investors to explore other Latin American countries

Prices for forestry lands in Uruguay have more than doubled since 2006

Jan 16, 2014, 12:00 ET from RISI

BOSTON, Jan. 16, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- In 2013, more than three quarters of all Latin American plantation forests owned by overseas financial investors, were in just two countries, Brazil and Uruguay.  As prices for agricultural land soar in those countries, timberland investors are exploring other Latin American countries to invest in. The future investment prospects for Latin American Plantation Forests are the subject of a new study recently released by RISI, the leading information provider for the global forest products industry.

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"Latin America has become a major target for foreign financial investors. The region is a world leader in the development of fast-growing eucalyptus and pine plantations and has already attracted considerable interest from managers of institutional timberland investments. Between early 2009 and fourth quarter 2013, the area of forest plantations in Latin America owned by foreign financial investors increased by 41%, while the area owned by foreign forest industry companies increased by 9%," explained Robert Flynn, study author and Director of International Timber at RISI.

Despite an excellent potential for growing trees, investing in Latin American plantations can be challenging.  A number of countries in Latin America have restricted foreign ownership of land and several other countries are trying to do the same. Latin American Plantation Forests: Outlook for Timber Supply and Markets assesses the prospects for plantation forest investment. It covers both the positive and negative attributes of twenty-one countries, breaking them into groups based on attractiveness for investment.

"The region is highly diverse. After tracking the forest industries of this region for 25 years, I believe that, on balance, the opportunities for timberland investment today are indeed better than ever," continued Flynn.

Included in Latin American Plantation Forests: Outlook for Timber Supply and Markets:

  • Forest ownership database of 300 entries, detailing how much planted forest each company owns across 21 countries
  • Trends in planted area and species most commonly planted in each country
  • Availability of financial incentives for plantation development
  • Area of FSC and PEFC certified forest by country
  • Analysis of tree farm ownership structure and the key players
  • Timber production trends and outlook for future supply/demand trends by country
  • Key countries with plantation development potential for biomass energy

For more information on this study, download the prospectus or visit www.risi.com/LAforests.

Companies analyzed in this study include:

Forestal Arauco, Fibria, Forestal Mininco (CMPC), Maderas del Orinoco (formerly Proforca), Suzano (includes Bahia Sul), Klabin, Duratex, Eldorado Celulose, CMPC, Cenibra  S.A., Gerdau, Montes del Plata (Stora, Arauco), Forestal Oriental (UPM), Alto Parana (Arauco), V&M Florestal, Masisa (own land), Bahia Specialty Cellulose, Masisa, Global Forest Partners, Aperam BioEnergia, Weyerhaeuser, Arcelor Mittal BioFlorestas, I. P. do Brasil, Arauco, Stora Enso (50% Veracel + Rio Grande), AMCEL, Bosques del Plata S.A. (CMPC), Brookfield Asset Mgmt, BTG Pactual, RIMA Industria SA

About RISI (www.risi.com)

RISI is the leading information provider for the global forest products industry. The company works with clients in the pulp and paper, wood products, timber, biomass, tissue, nonwovens, printing and publishing industries to help them make better decisions.

Headquartered in Boston, MA, RISI operates additional offices throughout North and South America, Europe and Asia.

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