Growth in East European trailer demand in 2016 is forecast in all but two of the 15 countries in the region, according to consulting group CLEAR International.
Bulgaria and Lithuania will see falls in trailer demand largely as a result of having had very strong trailer sales in 2015. Further market growth in 2017 will be wholly dependent on whether a sustainable recovery is underway in Russia.
Gary Beecroft, managing director of CLEAR commented, “2016 will see the strongest growth in the trailer market since 2011, but we will not see the sales of new trailers exceed the 2007/08 levels until after 2020.”
Recession, sanctions plus the plummeting oil price has had a devastating impact on the outlook for trailer demand in Russia. A year ago, 24,000 trailers were wiped from the forecast published in March 2015. Six months ago, a further 8,000 trailers were removed from the prognosis. In the current forecast yet another 4,000 trailers have been removed from the Russian outlook.
There have also been reductions of 1,200 trailers in Belarus and 500 units in The Ukraine. However, the news for the region is not all negative. In every country, other than those mentioned above, the forecast for trailer demand has improved. Furthermore, the improvements are substantial enough to outweigh the reduced trailer demand in Russia, Belarus and The Ukraine, so that 14,000 trailers have been added to the forecast for the region. New trailer demand will exceed the pre-GFC levels of 2006 in both 2016 and 2017.
Even though the outlook for Russia has worsened, 2015 will be the nadir for the market and demand will grow in all years but one to 2020. The Ukraine and Belarus will follow the same pattern.
As a consequence Russia, always the largest market for trailers in Eastern Europe until 2010, has fallen behind Turkey and Poland. Similarly the Ukraine and Belarus have been overtaken by Hungary and the Czech Republic.