Buoyed by the results for 2016 announced earlier today, German plastics and rubber machinery manufacturers are viewing 2017 with optimism.
According to the latest report from the German plastics and rubber machinery association VDMA, exports grew 5.1% in 2016 to over €4.9bn.
Registering a 15% growth in incoming orders in the first quarter of 2017, VDMA foresees a 4% rise in turnover for this year, to €7.7bn.
The association also expects growth to continue in 2018, albeit at a slower pace, at 3% to €8bn.
In 2016, German production value was up 6% at €7.4bn, almost twice that of global production value, which grew 3.1% at €34.9bn.
The US remained the top importer of German machinery, with imports up 7.6 % to €774m.
China, although still the second biggest importer saw figures decline for a third consecutive year at €629m.
The decline continued for the first quarter of 2017, although VDMA, without giving figures, has claimed that deliveries to the Chinese market will be growing for the rest of 2017.
Mexico overtook Poland to take the third place among German machinery importers with a sharp 52% rise in orders at €255m.
The German machinery industry also witnessed new upswing for raw materials exporting, developing countries due to increased raw materials prices.
Deliveries to Russia also increased, signalling a rebound in the Russian economy.
In general, global trade in plastics & rubber machinery grew 1% in 2016, of which Germany’s share rose to 22.8%. China’s share in the machinery market fell to 14.7%.
German machinery imports also grew strongly, by 8.9% to €1.2bn.
In 2016, exports to South Korea rose 44.6%, taking the country into the top 10 list.
In the UK, on the other hand, 2016 saw a heavy 31% decline in import of machinery from Germany.