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Daily News / Market Analysis / Statistics / Wood flooring
May 5, 2016

Declining EU wood flooring imports from China

Declining EU wood flooring imports from China

While consumption and sales of wood flooring manufactured in Europe improved in 2015, imports came under pressure last year. The 5% rise in imports recorded in 2014, after a lengthy period of weakness, proved to be short-lived.

The EU imported 28.82 million m2 of wood flooring last year, 4.6% less than 2014 and only just exceeding the recessionary low in 2013. These figures compare to imports of nearly 40 million m2 in 2010 and a high of 55.40 million m2 in 2007, as ITTO reports.

EUwoodflooringimportsChinaWood flooring deliveries from China, by far the EU’s largest single external supplier, fell 7.4% to 17.50 million m2 in 2015, the lowest level since 2005. While China’s exports to the UK increased by 2% to 5.19 million m2, there was a significant decrease in China’s exports to Belgium (-4% to 2.90 million m2), Netherlands (-8% to 2.07 million m2), Italy (-21% to 1.96 million m2), Germany (-10% to 1.75 million m2), and France (-47% to 0.44 million m2).

Overall the signs are that Chinese flooring became less competitive in the EU market in 2015. This is probably due to a combination of factors notably the weakness of the euro and concerted efforts by domestic and other overseas manufacturers in South East Asia and Brazil to regain share of the European market.

Tightening enforcement of the EU Timber Regulation, combined with publicity surrounding the Lumber Liquidators prosecution under the U.S. Lacey Act in relation to wood flooring from China may also have discouraged sourcing of Chinese product in 2015.

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