According to the operational data of the Association of Furniture and Woodworking Enterprises of Russia, the volume of furniture production in Russia for 6 months of 2023 increased by 8.6% compared to the same period of 2022 and amounted to 26.8 million pieces. The volume of furniture amounted to 179.5 billion rubles, which is 4.7% higher than last year's half-year results.

The largest increase was shown by the segment of metal office furniture (+26% or 22.3 billion rubles), followed by plastic furniture + 18% (1.4 billion rubles). In third place - wooden furniture for offices (+3%, 14.1 billion rubles).

The production of kitchen furniture (+51%), metal beds (+44%), hallway furniture (+26%) showed a high increase in volume; the production of wooden furniture for offices and folding upholstered furniture showed a 13% increase. At the same time, the production of outdoor furniture decreased by 65%, wooden furniture for the dining room and living room – by 36%.

"If in 2022 there was an increase in the furniture industry only in value terms, now production volumes are also growing," notes Alexander Shestakov, CEO of the First Furniture Factory, president of the Association of Furniture and Woodworking Enterprises of Russia. - Moreover, the cost of furniture from Russian manufacturers has not increased, or even decreased. So the First furniture company in the first half of the year did not change the selling prices for kitchen furniture. At the same time, sales of kitchens for 6 months in volume increased by 11.5%, the average bill increased by about 20%."

At the same time, the Association believes that the trend to lower prices is temporary, since the cost of furniture depends on components, and almost all fittings and chemical components are supplied from other countries for foreign currency. Domestic lumber may also become more expensive, which will affect the cost of furniture, so it is better not to postpone purchases.

For example, manufacturers of chipboard boards have been steadily decreasing prices for the last 14 months and now amount to 14.3 thousand rubles per m3. The cost of fiberboard is now at the level of mid-2021 - 145 rubles per sq. m. Plywood prices gradually began to rise (27.8 thousand rubles per m3), but they are still far from the values of June 2022 (43.6 thousand rubles per m3).

"Plywood manufacturers have the most difficult situation in the woodworking industry and the authorities' assistance to them is still insufficient," says Timur Irtuganov, General Director of the Association of Furniture and Woodworking Enterprises of Russia. – The recent decision of the government to ban the import of plywood from unfriendly countries has symbolic significance, since their imports accounted for approximately 0.2% of all sales. We are waiting for the next logical step to increase duties on imported furniture from unfriendly countries."

"Companies from China and Turkey are taking the place of Western furniture manufacturers who left Russia, and we compete with them in unequal conditions," Alexander Shestakov notes. - For example, domestic manufacturers must pay a duty of 30% to 60% when supplying furniture to the Turkish market, and our duty for foreign, including Turkish companies, is 9-12%. Russian furniture cannot enter European markets, including German, under any circumstances, although previously the products of our manufacturers were in demand in Europe. At the same time, German furniture manufacturers can easily supply furniture to the Russian market. We should pay attention to this situation, and if not to ban imports, then at least raise duties, as all other countries have already done."

Among other trends, the Association notes the prospects for exports to China. "Until recently, the competition between Russian and Chinese furniture was only in our market. But the situation is changing, the cost of furniture production in China has grown and Russian furniture is in quite acceptable positions, we can compete with them," concludes Timur Irtuganov.