Manufacturers: export order position slightly less weak in June
In February 2020 - just as coronavirus was developing into a global pandemic - there were still virtually equal numbers of positive and negative assessments regarding export orders. A large majority of entrepreneurs (64 percent) then held the opinion that the size of their export order portfolio was normal for that time of year. As the COVID-19 crisis worsened over the ensuing months, the order intake from abroad declined and a growing number of entrepreneurs gave a negative assessment. In May, the producers’ overall opinion reached its lowest point in eleven years at -31 percent. The export order position reached its all-time low in April 2009 during the financial-economic crisis which set in towards the end of 2008; on balance, 38 percent of exporting producers then considered their order book to be too small.
|Jaar||Maand||Order position exports (% balance of positive and negative answers)|
Largest exporting industries show a variety of trends Within the manufacturing sector, as of June all industries provide a negative picture on balance in terms of export orders. The least negative opinion on balance was held by the pharmaceutical industry (-2 percent) while the most negative opinion was found among producers of leather products and footwear (-76 percent). The two largest exporting industries saw improved prospects in June regarding their sales abroad. On balance, food producers rated their order position -17 percent, against -22 percent in May. A slightly greater improvement still was seen in the electrotechnical industry. The remaining three industries within the top 5 exporting industries showed a deteriorating export image, especially the petroleum and chemical industries. The prospects for exports within the machinery industry stabilised instead.
|Jaar||Maand||Food industry (% balance of positive and negative answers)||Petroleum industry (% balance of positive and negative answers)||Chemical industry (% balance of positive and negative answers)||Electrotechnical industry (% balance of positive and negative answers)||Machinery industry (% balance of positive and negative answers)|
Food and electrotechnical industries hold largest shares in industrial exports
Every year, manufacturing exports account for 80 percent of all Dutch goods exports. The food and electrotechnical industries each account for 18 percent of these manufacturing exports. The top 5 of exporting manufacturers further includes the chemical industry (16 percent), the machinery industry (10 percent) and the petroleum industry (9 percent); the top 5 combined account for a share of 70 percent in total manufacturing exports.
|Bedrijfstak||% industrial exports (%)|
|Vehicle and trailer manufacturing||5.1|
|Other transport equipment||3.0|
|Rubber and plastics||2.6|
|Textile, clothing, leather||1.1|
|Machinery repair and installation||0.1|
Greatly improved economic outlook
In June, the number of entrepreneurs with negative opinions about the development of the economic climate decreased considerably compared to the survey polls in April and May. Countries around the world are relaxing the measures that were taken to fight coronavirus, which allows the private sector to pick up trading activities again. Whereas in April and May the balance stood at -66 and -46 percent respectively, by June this had declined to 19 percent. The most greatly improved outlook for the economic climate among the top five exporting industries was found in the petroleum industry, followed by the chemical industry. The most modest improvement was observed in the electrotechnical industry.
- StatLine - Netherlands Business Survey, month
- News release - Producer confidence continues to recover