Based on the summery of import/export performance of rubber products between January and December from Japan Rubber Manufacturers Association, which is based on the foreign trade statistics issued by Ministry of Finance, the export amount was 1 trillion 14 billion 621 million yen, decreased by 1.9%, and the import amount was 398 billion 642 million yen, increased by 14.3% compared to the same period of last year.
Although the export results continued to be less than previous year from March to September, it has turned around to be positive since October for 3 consecutive months.
Automobile tires were also less than previous year from January to December. Although it was shifting towards year-on-year loss between February and September, it showed double-digit increase or close to double-digit in October and December, indicating some recovery trends.
Rubber belts continued to move between rises and falls shaprly. While January, March, April, July and October showed decrease, February, May, June, August, September, November and December showed increase. November and December showed double-digit increase. It is believed that this is because of demand recovery in belts in some resources developing countries as well as ongoing cheap yen due to the steady growth in belts for other purposes.
While rubber hoses were also showing less than previous year growth until October, they showed 2 consecutive months increase with 16.0% increase in November, and 8.7% increase in December.
On the other hand, for importing the accumulated total between January and December increased by 27.4% for rubber belts, 19.8% increase for rubber hoses, and 15.0% increase for automobile tires compared to the same period of last year, revealing double-digit increase.
This can be translated as Japanese manufacturers reimporting from their oversea manufacturing bases remains on high standards, and cheap yen didn’t cause any changes in this trend.
For December itself, the export amount for rubber products was 96 billion 477 million yen, increased by 9.9%, and the import amount was 33 billion 517 million yen, increased by 20.8% compared to the same period of last year.