December 2020: The upward trend in slate exports has been confirmed


1.- Analysis of the month

December 2020 confirmed the upward trend in slate exports.

Traditionally, the volume of this month was lower.  Both production and the rest of the distribution chain were affected by the Christmas holidays. However, the trend of the last few months continues to repeat itself: the difference with December of the previous year is significant, rising from 21,742 Tonnes in 2019 to 27,772 in 2020; this means an increase of +25.46% in the overall volume of exports.

In the rest of the countries, the month of December also reached the lowest volume of the year, but with higher values than in other years on the same date.

2 Analysis of export data – Accumulated figures

With the December figures, we conclude the year 2020, an atypical year due to the repercussion of the pandemic which has modified the market balance. Production in Spain was totally interrupted for 6 weeks, during which time some market areas were able to be supplied thanks to the available stock and were not stopped or at least just suspended punctually.  Once the containment was over, demand followed an increasing line and so did production which, because it could not make up for lost time, increased delivery times.

In global terms, we ended the year with 459,186 Tonnes exported, which represents a decrease of -1.9% compared to 2019. The good performance of the market as well as the production response in May meant that, in the end, the figures were not as negative as we thought, especially after the sanitary measures imposed during the containment. The good news also affected employment, which is so important in the small towns where we are developing our business. Far from being down, it is also up.

By country,

France finally remains to the 2019 figures (-3,886 Tonnes or -2%).

The United Kingdom shows worse results with a loss of 16,923 Tonnes (-12%).

Belgium, on the other hand, achieved similar figures for both years.

 Germany, the least affected country, increased by 9,166 Tonnes (+15%).

The cumulative figures for the rest of the countries in the world are positive at 2,557 Tonnes (+5.30%). 

Source: Clúster de la pizarra de Galicia – March 2021