Economic drivers: woodworking and furniture production in the Grodno region
The forest is one of the main renewable natural resources of Belarus, one of the most important national wealth. According to a number of key indicators characterizing the forest fund, our country is among the top ten forest states in Europe. Recently, close attention has been paid to woodworking. Efficient enterprises with high-tech equipment and modern management systems have been created in the country. Belarusian furniture, packaging, ecological tableware and other woodworking products are known far beyond the borders of the country. Grodno region is one of the leaders in this direction. An effective furniture cluster of FEZ Grodnoinvest has been formed here, the participants of which create an export-oriented product with a high added value. Read more in our new series of materials on the economic potential of the Grodno region.
To date, more than 40% of the country's territory is covered with forests of predominantly coniferous and softwood species. According to this indicator, Belarus is ahead of Poland (31%), Lithuania (35.1%), Ukraine (16.7%) and many other European countries. The total area of forest fund lands in Belarus is more than 9 million hectares. The stock of standing timber is approximately 1.9 billion m3. Following the principles of sustainable multi-purpose forest management, over the past 60 years, the forest cover of Belarus has doubled and reached its maximum value for more than a century. In the last 10 years alone, the area of reforestation and afforestation has increased by 69%.
There are more than 3 000 enterprises in Belarus that carry out a full cycle of wood processing: from the procurement of raw materials, primary sawing to deep processing - the production of wood-based panels, furniture and other finished products. The volume of woodworking products production exceeded 10 billion rubles in 2021.
For the Grodno region, woodworking is one of the most important industrial areas. The region leads in terms of production of fibreboard and chipboard (36% of the total volume), paper and cardboard (32%), and is among the leaders in the production of furniture. In 2021, 336.8 thousand m3 of sawn timber, 156.1 thousand m3 of plywood, 738.4 thousand m3 standard units of chipboard and 132.9 thousand tons of paper and cardboard were produced in the Grodno region.
Residents of the free economic zone Grodnoinvest play an important role in the development of this industry. An effective furniture cluster of more than 20 companies has been created here, including well-known brands Kronospan, Szynaka, ZOV, Fey & Co, HS Timber Group. In cooperation, they produce the entire technological chain of woodworking products with high added value and deep processing of wood, including furniture of various price categories, modern packaging products, innovative types of cardboard-based materials, eco-friendly tableware, board materials.
In the sector of woodworking and furniture production, about 40% of the total industrial production of FEZ is formed. Most of the products are exported to countries near and far abroad. High-quality Belarusian furniture is in demand in the distant markets of New Zealand, Canada, the United Arab Emirates, and China. According to the results of 2021 alone, the export of woodworking products from FEZ Grodnoinvest exceeded $565 million.
Among the largest woodworking enterprises in FEZ Grodnoinvest are:
Producers of wood-based panels, lumber
Kronospan Group of Companies, one of the world leaders in the production of wood-based panels, has been part of the furniture cluster in the Grodno region since 2015. In total, Kronospan Group of Сompanies manufactures products at 40 factories in many countries of the world, and the staff exceeds 14 thousand people. The product range includes chipboard, plywood, film faced plywood, veneer, MDF/HDF, laminate flooring, painted HDF and other wood products.
Mostovdrev JSC is one of the largest diversified woodworking enterprises in the Republic of Belarus, which has been operating as a resident of FEZ Grodnoinvest since 2013. It produces a wide range of products for the furniture, construction and finishing sectors using modern technological equipment from the best world manufacturers.
Smorgon Experimental Forestry was registered as a resident of FEZ Grodnoinvest in 2020 to launch a modern export-oriented pellet plant on the territory of FEZ in the Smorgon region. As part of the project, low-quality wood and sawmill waste are involved in the economic turnover to create a product with a high added value.
Manufacturers of upholstered and cabinet furniture
ZOV Group of Companies is a leading Belarusian manufacturer of kitchens, furniture for living rooms, bedrooms, dining areas for individual orders. It has been operating as a resident of FEZ Grodnoinvest since 2006. This is a family business in the third generation, owning over 50 thousand m2 of production space. The dealer network includes more than 900 official representatives and sales centers in the EU, CIS countries, USA, UAE.
Since 2018, Szynaka Mebel Bel LLC has been implementing a project to create a diversified furniture production on the territory of FEZ Grodnoinvest. The investor is one of the leading furniture manufacturers in Europe - Szynaka Group of Companies. The company produces furniture for residential premises (living rooms, dining rooms, bedrooms, children's rooms, offices, etc.) of various price categories: from economy class to premium segment.
BelGro FLLC specializes in the production of cabinet office and kitchen furniture. The enterprise is a part of the Taipit Commercial and Industrial Group, one of the largest production associations in the CIS and Eastern Europe in a number of product areas. It sells its products under the trademarks SKYLAND, SKILLL, ALVALINE, VOGELBAUM.
Mebel-Neman JLLC is a well-known Belarusian furniture manufacturer with over 25 years of experience. The company produces a wide range of cabinet furniture, including living rooms, bedrooms, hallways, kitchens, more than 50 different collections.
EDEM Ltd. is one of the first Belarusian manufacturers of office and hotel furniture. For 25 years, it has been occupying a leading position in the market, most of which - as a resident of FEZ Grodnoinvest. The product range includes hotel, home, office and custom furniture. Since 2015, the company has been a recommended furniture supplier for international hotel chains.
Slonimmebel JSC is one of the leading furniture manufacturers in Belarus, a resident of FEZ Grodnoinvest since 2011. It specializes in the production of bedroom sets, cabinet furniture and kitchens. About 2 000 sets of furniture are produced monthly at the production facilities in Slonim.
Goldoptima Ltd. specializes in the serial production of solid beech furniture. The furniture is suitable for use in home interiors, interiors of restaurants, bars, cafes, hotels and office spaces. In the production process, natural Carpathian beech wood, environmentally friendly varnishes and enamels are used.
Manufacturers of cardboard, packaging, sleep products
Belabedding Ltd. is one of the leaders in Belarus in the production of high-tech sleep products with over 15 years of experience. The partner is the German company Fey&Co. The enterprise became the first Belarusian manufacturer of Boxspringbett type beds. The product range also includes high-tech mattresses, mattress toppers, protective covers, memory foam pillows, duvets under the brands Good Night, «Cvetnye sny», «Doktor Sna», Kapitan Traum.
Slonim Cardboard and Paper Plant Albertin JSC was founded in 1806, since 2012 it has been successfully implementing investment projects as a resident of FEZ Grodnoinvest. The enterprise has established the production of cardboard, paper and sanitary papers, stationery, cardboard and paper sleeves.
Aquapack Industrial Ltd. is a manufacturer of corrugated board and corrugated packaging with more than 20 years of experience, of which more than 10 years - as a resident of FEZ Grodnoinvest. Consumers of products are enterprises of agriculture, food, chemical industry. The company offers services for the development of the construction and design of corrugated packaging, plotter cutting, production of samples of corrugated packaging, flexo printing.
EUEcoPack LLC and Barinpack Ltd. have launched the production of ecological packaging and tableware as part of the furniture cluster of the Grodno region and import substitution. Finished products are intended for export to countries near and far abroad, however, some part will be sold in Belarus as part of the country's gradual transition from plastic packaging of goods to environmentally friendly.
A new large-scale project in the field of woodworking is being implemented by a resident of FEZ Grodnoinvest HS Belacon LLC. A company with Austrian capital is completing the construction of a high-performance complex for deep wood processing in Svisloch, including a sawmill for coniferous round timber, drying chambers, sawn timber processing equipment, and a pellet manufacturing workshop.
The production of upholstered furniture will be launched in Grodno next year. With such plans, Krones-Grodno Ltd. was registered as a resident of FEZ Grodnoinvest in 2022. Within the framework of the project, a complex of production, warehouse and administrative premises will be built, modern technological equipment will be purchased.
Investors choose the Grodno region for its unique business climate, industrial and logistical potential, as well as living conditions with high standards of social service quality, environmental friendliness, and infrastructure availability. The preferences of FEZ Grodnoinvest, as well as a powerful woodworking cluster, create the prerequisites for the effective launch of production on land plots and ready-made production areas.
Residents of FEZ Grodnoinvest are ready to consider various options for cooperation, implementation of joint projects, development of trade and economic ties, including through the opening of dealer networks. More information about investment offers can be found in our special section. For its part, the FEZ administration is ready to assist in establishing business contacts, organizing visits to investment sites. Questions can be sent to e-mail: email@example.com.