US and Brazilian leather affected from a slow Chinese market

US and Brazilian leather affected from a slow Chinese market

The start of 2023 is suffering from the slow Chinese market: weak demand tied to non-brilliant production. US and Brazilian leather have been impacted because China and Hong Kong represent the main export markets. Thus, any variation generates consequences on the overall context. Additionally, the weight of Italy isn’t to be disregarded, as it’s the first reference market for US wet blue and the third for Brazil. Vice versa, Italy increased the amounts purchased by these two countries, especially in terms of volumes.

The slow Chinese market for US leather

Exported US leather in January 2023 was down from the same month of 2022. According to data published by “Leather and Hide Council of America”, exports of freshly salted raw hides were 13% less in quantity (in terms of number of hides) and -15% in value. China and Hong Kong account for over 70% of the overall exports towards these destinations, and the decrease was of 4% in quantity and 9% in value. Italy is the 9th most important market. Always in January 2023, US sales of freshly salted raw hides to Italy decreased by 13% in quantity and 41% in value (391,000 USD).

Italy is the first market for exported wet blue. It generates nearly half of overall revenue. For this product type, the USA sold 6% more in volume and 21% more in value (16.5 million USD). Even with the satisfactory performance of Italy, at global level, US exports decreased 8% in volume and 2% in value. The decreases towards Vietnam and China were determining factors.

Brazilian raw hides

After a stable January in terms of value and an increase in volume compared to the same month of 2022, the performances during February worsened. During the first two months of 2023, Brazil sold 174.6 million USD worth of material, down 17.5% compared to the same period of 2022. Yet, the overall surface increased 6.6%, to 25.1 million square meters. Italy, with a quota of 14.9% in value and 18.7% in surface, decreased 23.7% in value and increased 15.8% in volume. China and Italy, says CICB (Centre for the Brazilian Tanning Industry), which published the data, could be growth markets in the coming months. Brazil especially believes that the manufacturing recovery of China could lead to an increase of leather exports.

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