Letters From the West

Idaho China trade director brings timber buyers to state, Montana

Xu Fang is Idaho's China Trade Office Director in Shanghai

Xu Fang is Idaho’s China Trade Office Director in Shanghai

Idaho China Trade Office Director Xu Fang was in Idaho and Montana this week leading a delegation of Chinese and Korean companies interested in buying more timber in the two states.

Fang, who lives in Shanghai, took the group to Coeur d’Alene last week for a Small Log Conference, put on by the Forest Business Network. At the conference, they met with companies interested in exporting, including Boise Cascade and Idaho Forest Group, Fang said in an e-mail.

Before he took the Idaho job, Fang worked as a trade representative for the timber industry. And because of his expertise he still works with timber groups like the Softwood Export Council, which helped pay for the trip along with the state of Montana and the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Following in the conference, the group traveled to Missoula where they visited several sawmills.

“China has been using Idaho wood products for a long time,” Fang said. “Products available in China market, from companies such as Boise Cascade and IFG, include dimension lumber, engineered wood products and treated lumber.”

Rocky Barker is the energy and environment reporter for the Idaho Statesman and has been writing about the West since 1985. He is the author of Scorched Earth How the Fires of Yellowstone Changed America and co-producer of the movie Firestorm: Last Stand at Yellowstone, which was inspired by the book and broadcast on A&E Network. He also co-authored the Flyfisher's Guide to Idaho and the Wingshooter's Guide to Idaho with Ken Retallic. He also was on the Statesman’s team that covered the Sen. Larry Craig sex scandal, which was one of three Pulitzer Prize finalists in breaking news in 2007. The National Wildlife Federation awarded him its Conservation Achievement Award.

Posted in Letters from the West