The Russian ceramic tile industry reported stable production in 2014, but a drop in imports and local consumption
Following healthy growth in local ceramic tile production over the two-year period 2012-2013, the Russian ceramic tile industry suffered a slight downturn in 2014 with volumes remaining practically unchanged at the 2013 levels of 165 million sq.m (-0.6%).
Floor and wall tiles are following opposite trends, with floor tile production estimated to have fallen by about 2% on 2013 and wall tile output up by around 2.3%. More than 90% of Russia's production (149 million sq.m) continues to be sold on the domestic market, while 2014 exports remained stable at 16 million sq.m.
The slowdown of the Russian economy (which grew by just 0.3% in 2014 and is expected to contract by 3% in 2015), the uncertain economic and financial outlook, the political instability and the crash of the rouble are all factors that have contributed to the sharp decline in tile imports to Russia, which dropped from the record 80 million sq.m of 2013 to 73 million sq.m in 2014 (-9.2%). The downturn has affected almost all the major exporter countries, especially Ukraine and China, while Belarus and Germany are the only countries to have increased their exports to Russia.
Domestic consumption has also declined (-3.9%), falling to 222 million sq.m. In a market that has become very difficult for foreign suppliers, domestic production has increased its share of domestic demand (67% in 2014, compared to the 33% of imports).
Read the full article published on Ceramic World Review 111/2015 or download the pdf version of the article.