04/04/2013 12:03 EDT | Updated 06/04/2013 05:12 EDT

Forest industry convention marks new step in Interior sector's recovery

PRINCE GEORGE, B.C. - Hundreds of delegates have gathered in Prince George for a convention experts say marks another positive sign in the recovery of B.C.'s struggling forest industry.

The Council of Forest Industries holds its first full convention since the U.S. housing crash more than five years ago.

COFI chairman Nick Arkle is optimistic about predictions that the industry is heading into a so-called "super cycle" of strong markets and healthy prices.

He cautions that the global economy is still shaky, possible affecting the recovery, but he's hopeful Canadian forest companies are about to see an extended period of growth.

MaryAnne Arcand, CEO of the Central Interior Logging Association cautions that her members expect to share in the gains as companies recover, although she says they won't hold the industry hostage.

Before the two day convention wraps up Friday, the estimated 450 delegates will hear from B.C. Forests Minister Steve Thomson, federal Minister of Natural Resources Joe Oliver, B.C. New Democrat Leader Adrian Dix and Premier Christy Clark. (CKPG)