Footwear Market - China Outrivals Italy in Footwear Exports to Cyprus

Footwear September 17, 2015
Author: Olga Minchina
Account Manager

footwear market

European footwear products, well-known for their quality and style, enjoy high demand both within the EU and across the globe. Although EU production on the footwear market has traditionally been concentrated in Italy, Spain, and Portugal, the number of footwear manufacturers in these countries has been on a downward path in recent years, transferred to economies with lower labor costs, such as China and India.

In another sign of the times, the number of small footwear shops and market stalls, formerly abundant in Southern and Eastern EU countries, is gradually shrinking, due to the expansion of large retailers.

In general, though, footwear retailing has become more diversified, as consumers now have the ability to choose whatever shopping method suits them best - hypermarkets, outlets or online shopping. The majority of footwear brands are constantly expanding their retail networks to be in control of the promotion of their products. Customers, overall, prefer buying shoes in hyperstores, where they can choose footwear among a variety of different brands at affordable prices.

Many European companies have moved to high-quality and high-added value segments and niche markets. These include high-end footwear, children's shoes, footwear for specific applications (protective, golf, skiing boots), and bespoke footwear.

The main supplier of footwear to Cyprus is China that has long been the largest global footwear manufacturer, shipping products to countries across the globe.

In Cyprus, Italian shoes have always been highly sought after as the epitome of excellence and style. The neighboring Greece is also one of the main footwear exporters to Cyprus. The Greek footwear industry, however, is restrained by a lack of investment; footwear produced there is primarily consumed domestically or shipped to Cyprus, and that's about it.

The niche of casual footwear made of recycled material is gaining popularity among European consumers, who are progressively becoming environmentally conscious. However, such factors as trendy design and affordability continue to be the major determinants of the average customer's choice.

As the main supplier of footwear into Cyprus, China held a share of 51% of total imports in 2014. However, from 2007 to 2014, France had the highest growth rates in Cyprus's import structure, with a CAGR of 6%. It was followed by China (+4%) and Greece (+4%). The other remaining suppliers illustrated negative dynamics: Italy (-5%), the UK (-3%) and Spain (-6%). China significantly strengthened its position in Cyprus's import structure, from 40% in 2007 to 51% in 2014.

Footwear exports from Cyprus were extremely low. In fact, Cyprus mostly reexported products. Greece (42%), Egypt (13%), Libya (11 %) and Algeria (9%) were the leading destinations of Cyprus's footwear exports, together making up 74%. The share of Greece increased significantly (+14 percentage points), while the share of Mauritius illustrated negative dynamics (-2 percentage points).

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  • footwear market share
  • footwear prices
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  • key footwear producers

Source: World: Footwear - Market Report. Analysis and Forecast to 2025