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Bicycle Production in Europe Diminishing

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LUXEMBOURG (September 5) – Less and less bicycles are produced inside the European Union. That’s the most striking conclusion coming out of the market statistics for 2001 which will be published in full in Bike Europe’s September edition (publication date September 25). Production dropped 15% in 2001 while for the years to come bigger falls […]

LUXEMBOURG (September 5) – Less and less bicycles are produced inside the European Union. That’s the most striking conclusion coming out of the market statistics for 2001 which will be published in full in Bike Europe’s September edition (publication date September 25). Production dropped 15% in 2001 while for the years to come bigger falls are expected. Companies like Raleigh, and Accell Group are causing the diminishing bicycle production inside the European Union. Raleigh announced beginning 2002 that it will cease bicycle production in England end 2002. Dutch Accell Group closed factories for the production of Hercules, Winora and Staiger branded bicycles in Germany and is shifting this production to Hungary where it opened a new factory in a joint venture with Schwinn Csepel. Other major European makers are also expected to ship their production out of the EU as pressure on fixed costs is building.
Next to the production also the consumption and import of bicycles dropped inside the 15 member states of the European Union during 2001. Of course everybody expected this drop due to the 9/11 terrorist attacks and bad spring weather.
During 2001 it became apparent that consumer interest in Mountainbikes is fading. However, the Mountainbike was not the only segment hit hard as far as decreasing sales are concerned. Virtually every other sector experienced drops. With that consumption (also referred to as domestic shipments) of bicycles in the EU fifteen member states totalled slightly over 15 million units; down about 1.9 million units or 11% compared to 2000.
Compared to the consumption of bikes, production dropped even harder in 2001. Production totalled 10.5 million units in 2001; down 1.9 million units on 2000 or 15.3%.
The fifteen EU member states imported 3.2 million bikes from other EU countries during 2001 and 4.9 million from countries outside the EU. With regard to prices for bicycles imported from countries outside the EU; the average import price amounted € 107.83; 2.9% down on the average price of 2000.
Exports from the 15 EU member states to countries outside the European Union totalled 404,981 bicycles; down about 8% compared to the total for 2000. Prices however for the ‘Made in Europe’ exported bikes more or less skyrocketed. The average price amounted € 172.34; almost 30% up on the 2000 price. (JO)

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