In 2009, every market in Eastern Europe will experience a fall in trailer demand and almost all will see a drop in trailer production, according to the East European Trailer Market report released by consulting group CLEAR.
The report, covering 15 East European countries, says that in the first two months of 2009, some markets saw sales fall by over 80%.
In the first half of 2008, it had been hoped that the buoyant markets in the East would continue growing, or at least not shrink. In the five years ending in 2007, growth in the East European markets averaged 27% per year. However, in 2008, the market shrank by 10%, which was a much bigger fall than in Western Europe. The Baltic countries were the worst affected, while Turkey, Ukraine and Belarus posted a modest amount of growth.
The largest markets in order of size are Russia, Poland and Turkey, with these three accounting for 57% of the regions demand. Poland has witnessed the highest rate of growth. The markets in Russia and Poland are now as large as the biggest West European markets with the exception of Germany.
These markets have grown so fast that in many cases their trailer fleets are already approaching the size that will fully meet their transport requirements. When that happens, the high levels of trailer demand seen recently will fall.