China's aluminum profile production increased year by year from 2009 to 2018, from around 8.5 million tons in 2009 to 17.5 million tons in 2018, but the year-on-year growth rate has declined in recent years, with a year-on-year growth rate of around 11.11 per cent in 2013 and around 2.34 per cent in 2018, according to SMM data.
From the point of view of domestic demand, according to the research results, the domestic demand for aluminum profiles in China is relatively large, and more than 90% of the annual output can be digested by the domestic market. In 2018, for example, more than 16.5 million tons of domestic production was consumed that year, accounting for about 94.5% of the total output that year. The domestic demand is relatively large, which is mainly due to the huge number of consumers in China and the rapid development of terminal consumer markets such as real estate and car market. With a population of 1.4 billion, China is one of the most potential consumer markets in the world. In addition, according to the Bureau of Statistics, China's real estate market is developing rapidly. The new construction area of real estate in China was 976 million square kilometers in 2008 and 1.688 billion square kilometers at the end of 2018, an increase of nearly 73 percent in 10 years. According to the China Automobile Association, China produced 13.77 million cars in 2009. China's car production reached 29.07 million units in 2017, and although production fell slightly in 2018, it still maintained a relatively high scale of 27.77 million vehicles.
In terms of external demand, the total amount of aluminum profiles exported by China has changed greatly in the past 10 years, with little change from 2009 to 2013, showing a trend of increasing year by year since 2013, reaching its peak in 2016, and then falling back obviously. China's aluminum profile exports in 2018 were around 971000 tons, down 19 per cent from the high in 2016.
As far as SMM is concerned, in 2016, the export volume of other aluminum materials, such as aluminum sheet, strip and foil, increased, except that the export volume of aluminum profiles decreased compared with the same period last year. After 2016, the decline of China's aluminum profile export volume is even more obvious, mainly because a domestic aluminum profile giant enterprise has actively adjusted its strategy and product structure in response to overseas anti-dumping against China's aluminum profile, and the export volume has dropped sharply compared with the same period last year, which has directly dragged down the export data of individual aluminum profile products in China.
From a country-by-country point of view, China's aluminum profile exporters are more diversified. Vietnam has accounted for the largest proportion of aluminum profile exports since 2019, accounting for about 12% (more than 40% before 2016), followed by the Philippines, accounting for 5.22%. In detail, in previous years, the main exporters of aluminum profiles in China are Southeast Asian countries such as Vietnam, the Philippines, Malaysia, Nigeria, South Africa and other African countries. There are also European and American countries such as the United Kingdom and Germany. It should be noted that although the export volume of countries such as Vietnam and Nigeria is relatively large, in fact, these countries undertake the role of transit stations for re-exports, and the main consumer countries are still European and American countries.
Although the market is now expected to be positive for Sino-US foreign trade negotiations, and the probability that the two sides will reach a certain agreement is also very high, the export trade environment next year may be somewhat better than this year, but the US side has been clinging to aluminum export tariffs and has not relaxed anti-dumping controls. In addition, the economic environment of European countries this year is lower than that of previous years, such as PMI data, GDP growth rate, and so on. It is expected to affect some of the export demand. Taken together, the overall export volume of aluminum profiles this year is expected to decline compared with the same period last year.