Statistics and markets

Chinese tile exports see further downturn

30/06/2017

Chinese tile exports have fallen for the third consecutive year. According to Chinese Customs data, 2016 marked an even more significant decline than the previous two-year period, with volumes dropping by 5.9% from 1.063 billion to 1.000 billion m2.

The decline affected all continents with the exception of Oceania, where Chinese tile imports grew by 7% (from 32.4 million m2 in 2015 to 34.7 million m2).

Asian countries remained the main outlet market for Chinese ceramic tiles. Although Chinese exports to Asia fell slightly in 2016 to 583 million m2 (-1.3%), the region’s percentage share of total Chinese exports rose from 55% to 58%. Eight of the ten top countries of export are in Asia: Philippines, South Korea and Indonesia, all of which saw significant increases (between +21% and +29.5% on 2015), Saudi Arabia, where exports fell from 64 to 49 million m2 (-23%), Thailand (-9.8%), Pakistan (+23.7%), United Arab Emirates (-14.5%) and  Cambodia (+17%). Notably, India crashed out of the rankings of China’s Top 10 export markets following the slump in sales from 31.7 million m2 to 11.9 million m2 (-62.3%). On 14 June the Indian Ministry of Commerce and Industry approved the introduction of antidumping measures on Chinese ceramic tile imports. This will result in the application of duties for a period of 5 years on various types of tiles with the exception of full-body porcelain and panels less than 5 mm thick.

Africa, the second largest geographical area of export for Chinese tiles, saw a 14% contraction with volumes declining from 230 million m2 to 198 million m2. This was mainly due to the 70.9% fall in Nigeria, where exports plummeted from 52.4 million m2 to 15.3 million m2 (-70.9%).

South America also saw a fall for the third consecutive year with sales declining in 2016 to 80 million m2 (-11%). A similar contraction occurred in North America (-11.7%), with exported volumes dropping from 88 to 78 million m2. In this case the positive results in the US market (56.4 million m2, +11%) were not sufficient to offset the slump in sales in Mexico (down from 24.5 to 9.3 million m2, -62%) following the introduction of antidumping duties in 2015.  

Chinese exports to Europe continued the downward trend of the past 5 years, again following the introduction of antidumping duties by the EU in 2011. Last year Chinese tile imports to the EU totalled just 15.9 million m2 (down 20.2% on 2015 and 77% over the five-year period). The request to extend the measure for a further five years, an action strongly supported by the entire European ceramic industry, is currently being reviewed by Brussels.

Chinese Exports to non-EU European markets totalled 10.2 million m2 (down 8.7% on 2015), a volume that has practically halved with respect to 2014.

Tab.1: Chinese tile exports by geographical area (m2 x 000)

  2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 Var %
16/15
Var %
15/14
% Share
on total
2016 exports
Asia 584,786 569,468 572,618 590,573 583,051 -1.3% 3.1% 58.3%
Africa 193,100 236,798 250,284 230,269 197,949 -14.0% -8.0% 19.8%
South America 118,055 129,280 103,803 89,894 80,018 -11.0% -13.4% 8.0%
North America 73,309 82,713 82,077 88,577 78,238 -11.7% 7.9% 7.8%
Oceania 23,284 25,607 28,866 32,424 34,742 7.1% 12.3% 3.5%
European Union 31,980 26,512 23,690 19,980 15,949 -20.2% -15.7% 1.6%
Other Europe 19,227 24,832 22,146 11,174 10,204 -8.7% -49.5% 1.0%
TOTAL 1,043,741 1,095,210 1,083,484 1,062,891 1,000,151 -5.9% -1.9% 100.0%

 

Tab.2: The largest markets for Chinese tile exports  (m2 x 000)

  2012 2013 2014 2015 2016 Var %
16/15
Var %
15/14
% Share
on total
2016 exports
Philippines 34,189 41,099 47,223 52,867 67,336 27.4% 12.0% 6.7%
South Korea 54,058 54,561 68,274 54,430 65,855 21.0% -20.3% 6.6%
Indonesia 35,034 34,982 44,461 44,053 57,046 29.5% -0.9% 5.7%
USA 41,219 48,155 46,789 50,757 56,363 11.0% 8.5% 5.6%
Saudi Arabia 87,397 81,439 63,404 63,985 49,179 -23.1% 0.9% 4.9%
Thailand 40,610 55,679 38,218 44,508 40,166 -9.8% 16.5% 4.0%
Pakistan 12,304 13,780 19,011 27,250 33,716 23.7% 43.3% 3.4%
Australia 19,560 22,288 25,163 28,347 30,327 7.0% 12.7% 3.0%
United Arab Emirates 36,111 35,920 33,865 34,549 29,547 -14.5% 2.0% 3.0%
Cambodia 11,959 13,371 17,420 23,429 27,443 17.1% 34.5% 2.7%
Other countries 671,300 693,936 679,656 638,716 543,173 -15.0% -6.0% 54.3%
TOTAL 1,043,741 1,095,210 1,083,484 1,062,891 1,000,151 -5.9% -1.9% 100.0%
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