Slight Decline in Furniture Exports

Published: January 18, 2011; 00:09 · (Vindobona)

Austria's furniture industry shows itself cautiously optimistic despite a slight decline in exports and expects production increases.

Slight Decline in Furniture Exports / Picture: © Flickr

The production level of the domestic residential furniture manufacturers could be maintained in the past year. In the first 3 quarters of 2010, the Austrian furniture production increased by 0.2%, with a total value of € 1.7bn.

The largest increases in demand were observed for garden furniture (+8.9%), followed by indoor furniture (+4.2%); mattress manufacturers also continued the positive trend of the previous year (+2.8%). A slight decline was recorded by kitchen manufacturers with a decrease of 0.9% (€ 184m). The strongest declines, the same as in the previous year were again for office furniture (-9.4%, € 166m) and seating manufacturers (-10.8%, € 181m) due to poor market conditions in key export markets.

In 2009 the decline of exports was 16%, but the situation managed to stabilize in 2010: in the first 3 quarters, furniture worth a total of € 978m was exported, a decrease of less than 1.1% of the previous year’s value.

Exports to the EU declined by -1.5% (€ 734m). Germany remains the most important market for Austrian furniture, with an export volume of € 395m (+1.8%). The second place within the EU goes to Italy, with € 63m (-23.4%). Outside the EU, the second largest trading partner is Switzerland with € 112m (+10.8%), followed by Poland with € 45m (+15.9%) and the UK (€ 34m, +2.7%).