COLOGNE, Germany—Europe's truck and bus tire market is likely to see shortages and face increased prices into early next year as a direct result of the European Union's recent imposition of provisional tariffs on Chinese tires.
"With the anti-dumping tariff situation that we have right now, a lot of the orders in the last quarter have stopped," Stephan Helm, chairman of German tire retail trades association the BRV, said at the Future Tire Conference, held May 30-31 in Cologne.
Helm, who also is managing director of the Reifen Helm Group, expects the shortages to show up in third and fourth quarters this year. He also believes the shortages would impact both the budget and premium brands.
Low-cost Chinese tire imports have had the greatest impacted the retreading industry, which Helm said has seen an almost one-on-one relationship between increases in Chinese tire imports and decreases in the retreading market for EU suppliers.
"We are expecting (an impact) mainly on the retreading sector, and we expect increases in prices," Helm said. "If you take it all over Europe, it was 4 to 4.5 million imports from China and (there is) about 1 million stocked at the wholesales. So, this year, we are around 3 million units missing, and I don't think we can compensate for that. We will get some shortage to the end of the year, maybe the start of 2019.
"Then we will see changes as molds are brought from China to other locations and a change in the production situation. Then, I would say, stabilization."