EU wine exports at a record level in 2015
Brussels, 29 February 2016 – In 2015, EU wine exports reached € 9,8 billion, the highest historical level, in a context of strong worldwide competition.
“Again, the European Union remains the most important wine exporter worldwide and, after 3 years of relative stability, attained its best ever performance in 2015: 21,9 millions hectolitres (+3%) or the impressive equivalent of 2,9 billion bottles coupled to an economic performance of € 9,8 billion (+8,9%). This leads to a combined positive trade balance for the EU of over €7 billion.” said Jean-Marie Barillère, President of CEEV. “With a structural decrease of the EU internal consumption, exports are the key element to maintain the long term sustainability of the EU wine sector” he added.
This increase is in particular based on the growth of the exports to USA (+ 18% in value) which remains with €3,15 billion the most important market for EU wines. In addition, the unit value of EU wines exported to USA, €5,61/Litre, is well above the average (€4,47/Litre).
The more balanced exchange rate between the Euro and the US Dollar could partially explain this performance.
The second major growth factor was China (+26% in value and +29% in volume). After 2 years of decrease following the trade dispute between EU and China, the 2015 exports reached their highest level, both in volume and value.
The unit value of EU wines exported to China, €2,88/Litre, is clearly distorted by the volume of bulk wine exported. In the medium term the average unit price of EU wines would need to be increased to maintain EU competitiveness in the Asian continent.
“From our 5 main export markets in value (USA, Switzerland, China, Canada and Japan), only fair market access and competition is consolidated through an agreement in Switzerland. We strongly encourage the European Commission to conclude positively as soon as possible its negotiations with USA and Japan and to start negotiations with China. The case of Canada is particularly painful, negotiations on CETA concluded in October 2013 and we are still waiting for the ratification of the trade agreement” - said Ignacio Sánchez Recarte, Secretary General of CEEV. “We are doing well but, in a context of extreme worldwide competition, it will be difficult to maintain these impressive export figures as our competitors are going faster than the EU in negotiating trade agreements”.
“Strong perspectives of growth exist, in particular in the Asia-Pacific area. In order to be able to develop our exports in these countries, the EU must be offensive to obtain market access conditions at least equivalent to those of our main competitors, very active on these aspects” said Jean-Marie Barillère, President of CEEV.
The value of EU wine exports is supported by bottled wines (96%) and by GI wines. The latter represented 90% of the value with only 67% of the volume of total exports. On the opposite side, bulk wines which represented 17% of the total volume exported accounted for only 3% of the total value because of an average unit value of only €0,85/Litre.
Note to Editors:
Comité Européen des Entreprises Vins (CEEV – www.ceev.eu) represents the wine companies in the industry and trade in the European Union: still wines, aromatised wines, sparkling wines, liqueur wines and other vine products. It brings together 24 national organisations. With more than 7.000 companies, mainly SMEs, and more than 200.000 direct jobs in the EU, its members produce and market the vast majority of quality European wines, with and without a geographical indication, and account for over 90% of European wine exports.