The dragon reawakens: encouraging resultsAfter the big slowdown and the adoption of the new anti-pollution regulations passed by the government, cautious signs of recovery lead the Chinese market towards ACLE 2017
The year seems to have got off to a good start in China and the first estimates seem to point towards a renewed tranquillity after the stagnation that slowed down this colossal market.
On the 12th of April, the China Leather Industry Association (CLIA) revealed the figures for the first trimester of 2017 and the results that emerged are quite encouraging. But, above all, they have turned the catastrophic figures seen in 2016 around.
“In the first two months of 2017, the industry saw an increase in turnover of 5.6%”, states the CLIA press release, issued after APLF Hong Kong. “There has been a slight fall (1.1%) in exports, compared to a 10% increase in imports, particularly in terms of processed, semi-processed and untreated leather imports. This increase will benefit every segment of the leather industry”.
China is going through a radical transition in the leather sector due to the anti-pollution regulations imposed by Peking; a transformation which – according to Su Chaoying, Honorary Chairman of CLIA – should come to completion at the same time as the third Leather World Congress (29th August), which will also introduce the 2017 All China Leather Exhibition (30th August-1st September). Held at the customary New International Expo Centre in Shanghai, the 20th ACLE tradeshow covers an exhibition area of 92.000 square metres, split across eight halls, three of which are reserved for international tannery, machinery and chemical companies, while the remaining areas showcase the [gigantic] local market. 1.100 exhibitors are expected to be on show (at the end of March, 80 percent of the available spaces were already booked) from 36 countries, which looks to attract approximately 24.000 people, including operators, buyers and visitors.
Eyes are fixed on the automotive sector, the real driving force of the moment, which in 2016 registered record figures on a worldwide scale: 88.1 million cars sold (of which 28 million were sold in China), with an incredible growth rate of 13.6% year on year. For the Chinese market alone, this year’s forecast indicates that this trend should continue at a growth rate of 5%. This means that thirty million new vehicles could be sold in China over the course of 2017. A prediction corroborated by Michael Duck, Director of APFL, who highlighted a crucial point at the ACLE 2017 presentation: “It’s true that China is going through a delicate phase of transition, but there is also a very positive aspect: as the number of middle class people in the population gradually increases, the average rate of consumer spending has increased by 10.9% per year. A growth that involves approximately 400-million people.”