Research Report On Global Tire Industry, 2010-2011

(CRI,Shanghai)- In the Asian tire market, the overall situation is boosted powerfully by Chinese and Indian markets though Japanese tire market showed a downturn trend at the end of 2008.

In 2009, the auto sales volumes in Europe and USA declined compared with that in 2008. Nevertheless, with the growth of auto reserving volumes, the demand for replacement tires drives the growth of the whole tire market.

Under this background, tire manufacturers even begin to raise the price. The price has been increased firstly in Goodyear by 6% since December 1st, 2009. Subsequently, Bridgestone Americas, Continental North America and Yokohama Rubber increased their tire prices successively. Since January 1st, 2010, Bridgestone has raised the tire price by 5%. The price growth rate is about 5% for tires of Continental North America and 6% for all tires of Yokohama Rubber. Tire giants such as Kumho, Pirelli and Michelin also follow up.

In India, there is huge demand in the tire market, while the storage of tire manufacturers has decreased to the level equivalent to the total production of 20-25 days. Hence, the tire price in Indian market was raised by over 5% at the beginning of 2010. All tire companies owe the price increase to the unbearable price growth of raw materials. In November 2009, the heavy rain and flood severely affected the rubber production in Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia and India. Consequently, rubber production from these major rubber producers suffers considerable decline. The vigorous demand boosts the price of rubber.

USA's special tariff on Chinese passenger/light truck tires (tire special safeguard case) acts as another factor driving the price growth of tires. It affects China¡¯s tire export to USA and creates the opportunity for world tire manufacturers to raise the price.

Tire price increase arouses a new round of tire investment craze in the world. After the outbreak of the financial crisis, tire giants (Michelin, etc.) almost stopped all the production expansion plans. At the beginning of 2010, they resumed the production expansion and construction of new projects. Michelin plans to invest USD 870 million to establish a heavy duty tire plant in South India in the coming 2-3 years and put the plant into production in 2012. Bridgestone plans to improve the production capacity of passenger/light truck tires in its Kheda plant to 15,000/day with the investment of USD 56.30 million. Pirelli has declared to invest another USD 100 million in Brazil and Latin America for the production of OTR (off-the-road) tires and agricultural tires. Toyo Tire & Rubber Co., Ltd has also announced that it will set up a new tire plant in Southeast Asia. Cooper will add USD 10 million to improve the automatic production level of its tire plants; meanwhile it declares to improve the production capacity of its plant in Texarkana and expand the production facilities in Arkansas and Mississippi of USA, Guadalajara of Mexico and the joint venture in Kunshan, China.

In terms of tire trade in the world, China has become the world largest tire export country since 2004. However, in recent years, Chinese tires have sustained anti-dumping investigations by USA, Venezuela, Australia, Brazil, Peru, Egypt, Argentina, Turkey, South Africa, Mexico and India, etc. Because of the complete tire industry chain, huge tire demand, advantages in energy and labor resources in China, transnational tire enterprises increase their investment in China successively. It is forecast that the global status of Chinese tire industry will be further raised and China will remain the global No.1 by tire export volume in the coming years.


Article by Gen Wright

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