Dismal Prospects for French Parquet Producers

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In 2009, development on the French parquet market corresponds to the European trend: 20% less in production and 15% less in consumption. According to the association UFFEP combining between 60 and 70% of the French parquet production, output of the French producers was about 7.7 million m². Thereof 2.2 million m² were exported, meaning a value of € 60.5 million. In return, France imported some 9.7 million m² amounting to a value of € 152.8 million. Compared to the figures of 2007, production of French manufacturers have reduced by 42%.

In imports, massive hardwood flooring having increased five years in a row, showed a significant break-down in 2009, from 3.6 to 2.5 million m², while imported solid floorings from softwood continued to rise to nearly 4 million m². Multi-layer parquet reached to exceed the 2 million mark. Market share of the new European industry leader Poland was about 10%, China's share was about 35%.

For the current year, the forecasts are still unfavorable. According to European surveys, French manufacturers expect a further decline in parquet market of 5%. Whether these adverse conditions can be changed by the this year launched label „Parquets de France” is questionable. In addition, commodity costs for French parquet makers are rising. China is gladly buying oak logs for parquet and so helped increasing prices for oak by 10 to 15% in this fall.

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