I’m not the only one to have wondered why the bamboo papermaking industry is struggling.
In a blog post this week, blogger and co-author of the new book, The Story of Bamboo, Michael Fong explained that the industry has long struggled to produce its staple of bamboo products in the world’s largest supplier, China.
It has long been a source of frustration for bamboo makers, who have been under pressure from China’s government to produce their products in low-cost overseas factories.
Now that China’s demand for bamboo is increasing, it’s forcing many of the world, including Australian companies, to resort to China for their bamboo-based products, according to Fong.
As the Chinese economy continues to recover, so too has the pressure on the industry, which is now at the point where it’s no longer possible to produce bamboo at home.
Bamboo and paper, it turns out, are not interchangeable, and the only way to get the same product in both countries is to import it.
But how to get around this issue?
A lot of work has been done over the past 20 years to address the issue.
In the early 1990s, the World Bank began to work with producers of bamboo paper to improve the quality of their products and the supply chain.
This was a key part of the World Trade Organisation (WTO) mandate to tackle climate change and poverty, and helped to reduce the costs of papermaking.
But over the years, it has become apparent that this focus on papermaking has made it impossible for the industry to compete with other industries for markets, according the report in The Story Of Bamboo.
So the industry’s ability to export has diminished.
Now, the only option for the majority of bamboo-producing countries is importing their paper, said Fong, a lecturer at RMIT University.
It’s a trade-off that makes it even more difficult for Australian companies to compete.
It is the same trade-offs for other industries, including coal, iron ore, rubber, and metals, according Fong and coauthor Ian Cairns.
For the papermaking and bamboo-making industries, it can be a difficult trade-up to do.
While the two industries have always been competitive, they’ve had to compete in different ways.
The paper industry has been focused on making paper products in Australia, while the bamboo-printing industry has struggled to make its products in China, which has also made it difficult to compete globally.
As a result, Fong said, the trade-deals between Australia and China haven’t helped to ensure a fair trade.
“It’s been a bit of a trade issue,” he said.
“They haven’t made any big changes in the way they’re producing their paper.
They haven’t put the pressure up on the Australian paper industry to be competitive in terms of pricing and wages and the way in which they’re managing the trade.”
So it’s not just paper.
What about the other industries that use bamboo?
The trade-disputes have made it tough for bamboo-and-paper manufacturers to compete internationally.
There are some countries that rely on bamboo to produce more than 1 million tonnes of paper each year.
This is what Australia’s export-controlled paper market looks like, according Bamboo Trade and Investment Association (BTAIA), a trade body.
This means that the amount of paper produced in Australia is dependent on the amount imported, and this has made the industry highly vulnerable to competition from other countries.
“Bamboo is a highly dependent commodity in the paper market and there is very little room for competition in that market,” said BTAIA’s executive director, Steve Troughton.
“We’ve had no significant competition in the last decade.”
The biggest threat to the industry in Australia’s papermaking sector comes from China, Fink said.
While most countries make their paper in China and import it from China for its products, Australia does not.
That makes it hard for Australian producers to compete for markets in China.
China has a large market for bamboo and paper.
It was one of the biggest buyers of Australian paper in the past decade.
In 2011, China spent $1.3 billion on Australian paper.
According to the Australian Bureau of Statistics, the amount China imported into Australia in 2013 was almost $1 billion, or about 30 per cent of Australia’s total paper market.
The Australian Paper Board says that the country imported about 1.6 million tonnes in 2013.
The bulk of this was for export, but there was also a lot of Australian exports.
According the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC), Chinese consumers spent $7.5 billion on Australia’s newspapers in the same year.
“The Chinese have been making their way into Australia’s market for a while, and we haven’t seen any real change,” Fong told The Conversation.
“But it’s important for