KEY FIGURES 2017
Number of companies: 1,139
Number of employees: 11,704
Revenues (in €): 1.5 billion
Key export markets: Algeria, Austria, Bosnia and Herzegovina, Croatia, Italy, Germany, Lybia, Saudi Arabia, Tunisia, Serbia, Switzerland...
Source: AJPES, 2019
- Pre-fabricated wooden houses
- Builders' joinery & carpentry of wood
- Plywood, veneered panels and similar laminated wood
- Fibreboard of wood or other ligneous materials
- Veneer sheets&sheets for plywood &other wood sawn lengthwise
- Particle board and similar board of wood or other ligneous materials
- Packaging materials of wood
- Tableware and kitchenware of wood
- Wooden furniture for kitchens, living quarters and public institutions
- Wood marquetry & inlaid wood
- Wooden frames for paintings etc.
- Casks, barrels, vats, tubs etc. of wood
Slovenia’s reputation as the third country in Europe after Finland and Sweden with over 60 per cent of its territory under forests explains why woodworking industry has always been important. Cabinet, furniture, millwork and custom woodworking manufacturers tap the local skills heritage. The industry employs some 11,400 people in over 1,100 companies – bedrock of skills and technical expertise for investors to exploit. There is a full product range of both mechanical and chemical processing. The mechanical branch comprises milling, manufacturing of plywood and particle board, and fabrication of furniture and timber components for the construction industry. Pulp and paper, cardboard, and packaging materials are products of the chemical branch and there are companies producing surface coatings. The production of biofuel from biomass uses waste and residues from forestry and related industries. The fact that the energy demand of the woodworking industry is low offers future opportunities in the trading scheme designed to foster CO2 emission reduction.
Estimated gross annual labour costs in wood-processing industry for 2016
Total cost per employee in €
As companies try to innovate in order to increase turnover and profitability, some 500 students enrolled in higher education courses for forestry and wood processing qualifications and 2,300 students in secondary schools for forestry and forest-based industries represent social capital that adds value to a legacy of skills. But all ambitions for sustainable development and growth will fall short of the target without a comprehensive development strategy for this segment of the national economy. The association that operates within the framework of the Chamber of Commerce and Industry of Slovenia represents woodworking and furniture making companies and the Chamber of Agriculture and Forestry came in contact with some 70 per cent of forest owners and other players in the forest sector. The idea is to enhance the forest and woodworking chain from forest owners and forest managers to woodworking and furniture manufacturers. As a result, the output of the branches of the woodworking industry will be products with higher value added and more jobs. The role played in the process by the local wood and furniture clusters and trade associations is very important and the pool of the Slovenian workforce ready available for greenfield and brownfield investment projects ranges in qualification from unskilled to high-calibre experts.
Quality link to regional markets
Forests have the important function of protecting our living environment by recharging water resources and preserving our country's land. In recent years people have come to consider diversified advanced roles forests have in preventing global warming, use in promoting health, culture, education and the preservation of various living organism. Also, forests are looked to for producing timber, an environment-conscious material, with a low load on the environment.
In order to continually demonstrate the role forests have in preventing global warming and a number of other areas, based on the important functions possessed by forests - water and land preservation forests, man and forest symbiosis and cyclic resource forests - from the point of view of further promotion of the role of forests in preventing global warming by absorbing carbon dioxide, the development of a stable forestry management base for forest resources and forest roads is being promoted.
The principal forestry growing and harvesting regions in Slovenia stretch into the forested areas the Western Balkans. A complimentary range of businesses provide support for the forestry, wood processing and pulp and paper industries. Advances in technology and the commercialisation of these processes are opening up new opportunities. When undertaking major new construction projects, these companies can be called upon, along with engineering and contracting companies from the wider region to ensure that projects come in on time and budget.
It is important to raise the level of use of wood per inhabitant of Slovenia but before architects and their clients »rediscover« wood, foreign markets remain essential for the earnings of local companies with exports accounting for nearly 51% of all revenues.
There are several regional programmes launched with the aim to provide support to the neighbouring countries: to the Serbian wood processing industry to enter the international market, to the clusters within the framework of the 6-Region Strategic Joint Action Plan for Knowledge-based Regional Innovation, and the integration of national programmes in the area of wood material science and engineering in the forest-based value chains. Foreign investors can clinch deals with the regional woodworking companies through the channels the Slovenian companies maintain with the members of the Southeast and Central European Network of Forest-based Clusters.
Productivity in Industry, 2017
<i>Related GDP (PPP) per person employed in industry (in €)</i>
To surround the urban areas by rich, green forests and to revitalise villages is not only the mission of the people involved in forestry but for all of us. To ensure continued residence in rural areas, the living conditions of people living in forest areas is stabilised by developing infrastructure, including road networks through forests to realise symbiosis of mountain and urban areas. In Slovenia, it is a matter of paramount importance.
Wood is gaining popularity in the building industry and there are numerous opportunities for growth opening to woodworking companies to reduce raw timber exports and increase value added while using biomass to generate energy necessary for woodworking processes. National and international projects in the area of wood material science and engineering in the forest-based value chains provide a platform for networking and integration of research activities and Slovenian organisations and institutions have been highly pro-active participants.
The Furniture and Wood-Processing Industry Association is responsible for the strategic industry project »FOREST and WOOD for sustainable development of Slovenia«, that links the entire forestry-wood chain from owners of woods to forestry, wood-processing and furniture industry and to craft. The umbrella project includes also all most important institutions to provide support for the industry, as well as R & D and educational facilities.
In addition to the “soft” infrastructure, Slovenia has excellent physical infrastructure that includes forest roads for the conveyance of timber and maintenance of forests. and modern transport routes for full use of forest resources in order to develop and preserve a good living environment. There are accompanying facilities, test laboratories, engineers, designers, architects and managers capable of turning investments into success stories.
Leading domestic and foreign-owned companies
- Adria dom (Wooden mobile homes)
- Alples (Sawn wood, wooden furniture, doors and windows, accessories and packaging)
- ESOL (Solid wooden boards for cabinetmaking and accessories for interior decoration, elements for campers/trailers and mobile homes, wood pellets for heating)
- GG Novo mesto (Forestry services and sawmill machinery)
- GGP Postojna (Forestry services, manufacture of veneer sheets, particle boards etc.)
- Gonzaga-pro (Furniture and accessories for public institutions and companies: offices, day-care centres, schools, libraries, hotels)
- HIT Preless (Office furniture & armchairs, spinning & conference chairs)
- Hoja (Glued-laminated wood structures)
- Ilmest / Ilcam (Furniture made of solid wood and production of sawn wood and boards)
- Inles / Retno & Triglav (External construction elements: windows and doors)
- Inotherm (Aluminium entrance doors)
- Jelovica (Windows, doors and pre-fabricated houses)
- Jera Mix (Wooden furniture for office, bathroom, wardrobes, drawer units)
- Lesonit / Fantoni (All kinds of fibreboards, laminates, veneer sheets and particle boards, plywood, laminboards)
- LIP Bled (Doors, parquet, laminate, solid wood furniture, timber)
- Lumar inzeniring / Green Building Group (Pre-fabricated houses including ecological bio houses and passive houses)
- M Sora (Windows and doors, carpentry, sawmill)
- Marles houses Maribor (Prefabricated houses and attics, erection of all sorts of public buildings, office buildings, production halls)
- Merkscha / Merkscha (Custom cutting and treatment of veneer)
- Podgorje (Wooden furniture for yachting, trailers and mobile homes)
- Riko Hise (Pre-fabricated houses (solid wooden bio house) and wooden facades)
- SGG Tolmin (Forestry services)
- Stilles (Period furniture reproductions)