China Footwear Industry

An Expert's View about Sourcing in China

Posted on: 29 Mar 2010

China’s footwear industry is optimistic of export sales growth, despite weak overseas demand.


The global financial downturn and the EU’s anti-dumping duties on leather shoes have affected China’s footwear overseas revenue negatively. From an average 20 percent export growth, the increase of foreign sales slowed to less than 3 percent in 2008.


Even so, economic indicators pointing to sustained recovery in markets worldwide are leading many suppliers to project as much as 20 percent growth in the next 12 months.


In addition, measures implemented during the past year to stave off further contraction have been helping companies weather challenges.


Although projections are positive, most makers continue to enforce cost-cutting measures that will help them remain financially viable in case expenses escalate.


The following are some of the key developments we see in China’s footwear industry:

• Despite anti-dumping duties, the majority of manufacturers continue to regard the EU as their main export destination for the months ahead. Releases are still influenced by trends in the market. A range of novel finishes are employed and different visual effects are achieved via scrubbing, crinkling, washing and other treatments.

• To circumvent the levies, many businesses targeting the EU are turning to synthetic leather. Apart from its low cost, the plastic-based alternative can feature textures and effects normally seen on genuine hides. The use of textiles is gaining ground as well,particularly for casual footwear.

• A growing number of enterprises, particularly those with sound credit, are transferring production facilities to inland provinces in the country. Unlike pioneering companies, however, such businesses are moving only their highly labor-intensive operations to the interior. Immature logistics and support industries, and a dearth of skilled workers make it impractical to relocate midrange and high-end lines there.



The above is extracted from the Executive Summary of China Sourcing Report: Footwear


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Posted: 29 March 2010

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