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This article is about ramin, the hardwood. For other uses, see Ramin (disambiguation) and Ramen.
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
(unranked): Angiosperms
(unranked): Eudicots
(unranked): Rosids
Order: Malvales
Family: Thymelaeaceae
Genus: Gonystylus
Teijsmann & Binnendijk

See text

Gonystylus, also known as ramin, is a southeast Asian genus of about 30 species of hardwood trees native to Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia, Brunei, the Philippines, and Papua New Guinea, with the highest species diversity on Borneo. Other names include melawis (Malay) and ramin telur (Sarawak).


Ramin is a medium-sized tree, attaining a height of about 24 m (80 ft) with a straight, clear (branch-free), unbuttressed bole about 18 m (60 ft) long and 60 cm (2 ft) in diameter. The trees are slow-growing, occurring mainly in swamp forests.


As of February 2014 The Plant List recognises 32 accepted species:[1]


Gonystylus spp. - MHNT

The white wood, harder and lighter in colour than many other hardwoods, is often used in children's furniture, in window blinds, and for making dowels. However, over-exploitation has led to all species of ramin being listed as endangered species,[2] particularly[clarification needed] in Indonesia[citation needed] and Malaysia.[citation needed] An estimated 90% of ramin in recent international trade is illegally logged.[citation needed]

Ramin wood has significant commercial value and is used to make products such as furniture, toys, broom handles, blinds, dowels and decorative mouldings. [3]


Sumatra’s peat swamp forests are important habitat for ramin trees. The Sumatran ramin tree species are CITES protected species. The logging and trade in ramin has been illegal in Indonesia since 2001. Internationally, any illegal trade in Indonesian ramin is prohibited under the UN Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species (CITES). Indonesian government maps show that 800,000ha (28%) of Sumatra’s peat swamp forest was cleared between 2003 and 2009. Some 22% of this clearance was in areas currently allocated to APP’s log suppliers.[4]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Chisocheton". The Plant List. Retrieved 24 February 2014. 
  2. ^ "Ramin". Kew, England: Royal Botanic Gardens. Retrieved 1 March 2012. 
  3. ^ The Ramin Paper Trail Asia Pulp & Paper Under Investigation - Part 2 Greenpeace March 1, 2012
  4. ^ The Ramin Paper Trail Greenpeace March 1, 2012

External links[edit]