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Global Pear Market – Russia, Indonesia, and Germany Are the Largest Importers in the World

pear

Global Pear Market – Russia, Indonesia, and Germany Are the Largest Importers in the World

IndexBox has just published a new report: ‘World – Pears – Market Analysis, Forecast, Size, Trends and Insights’. Here is a summary of the report’s key findings.

The global pear market revenue amounted to $27.3B in 2018, increasing by 4.7% against the previous year. This figure reflects the total revenues of producers and importers (excluding logistics costs, retail marketing costs, and retailers’ margins, which will be included in the final consumer price). The market value increased at an average annual rate of +2.7% over the period from 2008 to 2018; the trend pattern indicated some noticeable fluctuations being recorded in certain years. The pace of growth appeared the most rapid in 2013 with an increase of 14% year-to-year. Over the period under review, the global pear market attained its maximum level at $30.8B in 2014; however, from 2015 to 2018, consumption failed to regain its momentum.

Consumption By Country

The country with the largest volume of pear consumption was China (16M tonnes), accounting for 66% of total consumption. Moreover, pear consumption in China exceeded the figures recorded by the world’s second-largest consumer, Italy (689K tonnes), more than tenfold. The U.S. (658K tonnes) ranked third in terms of total consumption with a 2.7% share.

From 2008 to 2018, the average annual rate of growth in terms of volume in China stood at +2.1%. The remaining consuming countries recorded the following average annual rates of consumption growth: Italy (+0.2% per year) and the U.S. (+0.9% per year).

In value terms, China ($17.5B) led the market, alone. The second position in the ranking was occupied by Italy ($887M). It was followed by the U.S..

The countries with the highest levels of pear per capita consumption in 2018 were Argentina (14,247 kg per 1000 persons), Italy (11,598 kg per 1000 persons) and China (11,233 kg per 1000 persons).

From 2008 to 2018, the most notable rate of growth in terms of pear per capita consumption, amongst the main consuming countries, was attained by Argentina, while the other global leaders experienced more modest paces of growth.

Market Forecast 2019-2025

Driven by increasing demand for pear worldwide, the market is expected to continue an upward consumption trend over the next seven years. Market performance is forecast to retain its current trend pattern, expanding with an anticipated CAGR of +1.9% for the seven-year period from 2018 to 2025, which is projected to bring the market volume to 28M tonnes by the end of 2025.

Production 2007-2018

In 2018, the global pear production stood at 25M tonnes, surging by 1.8% against the previous year. The total output volume increased at an average annual rate of +1.5% over the period from 2008 to 2018; the trend pattern remained relatively stable, with only minor fluctuations being observed throughout the analyzed period. The pace of growth was the most pronounced in 2011 when production volume increased by 6.2% year-to-year. The global pear production peaked at 26M tonnes in 2014; however, from 2015 to 2018, production stood at a somewhat lower figure. The general positive trend in terms of pear output was largely conditioned by a mild increase of the harvested area and measured growth in yield figures.

In value terms, pear production amounted to $27.7B in 2018 estimated in export prices. The total output value increased at an average annual rate of +3.1% over the period from 2008 to 2018; the trend pattern indicated some noticeable fluctuations being recorded over the period under review. The most prominent rate of growth was recorded in 2013 with an increase of 16% against the previous year. The global pear production peaked at $31.3B in 2014; however, from 2015 to 2018, production stood at a somewhat lower figure.

Production By Country

China (17M tonnes) remains the largest pear producing country worldwide, comprising approx. 68% of total production. Moreover, pear production in China exceeded the figures recorded by the world’s second-largest producer, Argentina (954K tonnes), more than tenfold. Italy (767K tonnes) ranked third in terms of total production with a 3.1% share.

In China, pear production increased at an average annual rate of +2.2% over the period from 2008-2018. The remaining producing countries recorded the following average annual rates of production growth: Argentina (+2.6% per year) and Italy (-0.0% per year).

Harvested Area 2007-2018

In 2018, the global pear harvested area stood at 1.4M ha, approximately mirroring the previous year. Overall, the pear harvested area continues to indicate a slight contraction. The most prominent rate of growth was recorded in 2011 with an increase of 2% against the previous year. The global pear harvested area peaked at 1.6M ha in 2013; however, from 2014 to 2018, harvested area stood at a somewhat lower figure.

Yield 2007-2018

Global average pear yield amounted to 18 tonne per ha in 2018, going up by 2.8% against the previous year. The yield figure increased at an average annual rate of +2.8% over the period from 2008 to 2018; the trend pattern remained consistent, with only minor fluctuations being recorded throughout the analyzed period. The growth pace was the most rapid in 2017 with an increase of 7.2% against the previous year. The global pear yield peaked in 2018 and is likely to continue its growth in the near future.

Exports 2007-2018

Global exports amounted to 2.8M tonnes in 2018, jumping by 4.6% against the previous year. Overall, pear exports, however, continue to indicate a relatively flat trend pattern. The most prominent rate of growth was recorded in 2014 when exports increased by 5.7% y-o-y. The global exports peaked at 2.8M tonnes in 2008; however, from 2009 to 2018, exports stood at a somewhat lower figure.

In value terms, pear exports stood at $2.7B (IndexBox estimates) in 2018. Overall, pear exports, however, continue to indicate a relatively flat trend pattern. The most prominent rate of growth was recorded in 2013 when exports increased by 11% year-to-year. In that year, global pear exports reached their peak of $2.8B. From 2014 to 2018, the growth of global pear exports failed to regain its momentum.

Exports by Country

In 2018, China (544K tonnes), distantly followed by the Netherlands (337K tonnes), Argentina (317K tonnes), South Africa (302K tonnes), Belgium (288K tonnes), Italy (158K tonnes), Chile (156K tonnes), Spain (145K tonnes) and the U.S. (132K tonnes) represented the major exporters of pears, together achieving 86% of total exports.

From 2008 to 2018, the most notable rate of growth in terms of exports, amongst the main exporting countries, was attained by South Africa, while the other global leaders experienced more modest paces of growth.

In value terms, China ($602M), the Netherlands ($381M) and Argentina ($294M) were the countries with the highest levels of exports in 2018, with a combined 48% share of global exports.

China experienced the highest rates of growth with regard to exports, in terms of the main exporting countries over the last decade, while the other global leaders experienced mixed trends in the exports figures.

Export Prices by Country

In 2018, the average pear export price amounted to $962 per tonne, approximately reflecting the previous year. Over the period under review, the pear export price continues to indicate a relatively flat trend pattern. The growth pace was the most rapid in 2013 an increase of 15% y-o-y. In that year, the average export prices for pears reached their peak level of $1,127 per tonne. From 2014 to 2018, the growth in terms of the average export prices for pears failed to regain its momentum.

There were significant differences in the average prices amongst the major exporting countries. In 2018, the country with the highest price was Italy ($1,299 per tonne), while South Africa ($636 per tonne) was amongst the lowest.

From 2008 to 2018, the most notable rate of growth in terms of prices was attained by China, while the other global leaders experienced more modest paces of growth.

Imports 2007-2018

Global imports amounted to 2.7M tonnes in 2018, rising by 3% against the previous year. In general, pear imports, however, continue to indicate a mild contraction. The pace of growth appeared the most rapid in 2017 with an increase of 7.3% year-to-year. Over the period under review, global pear imports reached their peak figure at 3.1M tonnes in 2008; however, from 2009 to 2018, imports failed to regain their momentum.

In value terms, pear imports amounted to $2.7B (IndexBox estimates) in 2018. Over the period under review, pear imports, however, continue to indicate a measured drop. The growth pace was the most rapid in 2017 with an increase of 13% y-o-y. Over the period under review, global pear imports attained their peak figure at $3.3B in 2008; however, from 2009 to 2018, imports failed to regain their momentum.

Imports by Country

The countries with the highest levels of pear imports in 2018 were Russia (271K tonnes), Indonesia (187K tonnes), Germany (185K tonnes), Brazil (158K tonnes), the UK (138K tonnes), the Netherlands (129K tonnes), the U.S. (123K tonnes), France (116K tonnes), Viet Nam (100K tonnes), Belarus (83K tonnes), China, Hong Kong SAR (82K tonnes) and Italy (80K tonnes), together accounting for 61% of total import.

From 2008 to 2018, the most notable rate of growth in terms of imports, amongst the main importing countries, was attained by Belarus, while the other global leaders experienced more modest paces of growth.

In value terms, Germany ($244M), Russia ($202M) and Indonesia ($147M) were the countries with the highest levels of imports in 2018, together accounting for 22% of global imports. Brazil, Viet Nam, the U.S., the UK, the Netherlands, France, Italy, Belarus and China, Hong Kong SAR lagged somewhat behind, together accounting for a further 37%.

Belarus recorded the highest rates of growth with regard to imports, in terms of the main importing countries over the last decade, while the other global leaders experienced more modest paces of growth.

Import Prices by Country

In 2018, the average pear import price amounted to $994 per tonne, stabilizing at the previous year. Overall, the pear import price, however, continues to indicate a relatively flat trend pattern. The most prominent rate of growth was recorded in 2013 an increase of 7.4% against the previous year. In that year, the average import prices for pears attained their peak level of $1,108 per tonne. From 2014 to 2018, the growth in terms of the average import prices for pears remained at a lower figure.

Prices varied noticeably by the country of destination; the country with the highest price was Viet Nam ($1,414 per tonne), while China, Hong Kong SAR ($577 per tonne) was amongst the lowest.

From 2008 to 2018, the most notable rate of growth in terms of prices was attained by Viet Nam, while the other global leaders experienced more modest paces of growth.

Source: IndexBox AI Platform

quotas

Are Quotas Worse Than Tariffs?

Quotas Return

With all the focus on tariffs these days, it is easy to overlook the return of another tool used to limit imports: quotas.

Over a year ago, the Trump Administration used Section 232 of the Trade Expansion Act of 1962 to impose 25 percent tariffs on specified steel imports and 10 percent tariffs on specified aluminum imports. Three countries – South Korea, Brazil and Argentina – made agreements with the United States to apply quotas to their steel exports in lieu of the Section 232 tariffs. Argentina also agreed to quotas on its aluminum exports.

According to numerous reports, U.S. negotiators were seeking similar agreements with Canada, Mexico, Japan and the European Union (EU). In May 2019, however, the governments of the United States, Canada and Mexico announced that they had reached a deal to lift steel and aluminum tariffs without imposing quotas, choosing instead to adopt a monitoring system with the right to re-impose tariffs on these products if surges are detected in the future. This deal could be a template for agreements with Japan and the EU to address their steel and aluminum tariffs.

In ongoing Section 232 investigations, the administration is keeping quotas on the table in other sectors including autos and auto parts, uranium ore and titanium sponges.

The Difference between Quotas and Tariffs

Quotas and tariffs are both used to protect domestic industries by artificially raising prices in the domestic market. Their administration and effects, however, differ in specific ways. Quotas restrict the quantity of a good imported from another country. Tariffs are a charge levied on the value of goods imported from another country.

While tariffs generate revenue that is paid to the importing country’s treasury, the value of a quota, also called “quota rents,” generally goes to the foreign exporters who are able to sell goods subject to the quota at higher prices and collect higher per unit revenue. In both cases, domestic consumers in the importing country pay the costs of tariffs and quota rents. But with quotas, the government of the importing country receives no revenue.

Quotas can be much more complicated to administer than tariffs. Tariffs are collected by a customs authority as goods enter a country. With quotas, customs authorities must either monitor imports directly to ensure that no goods above the quota amount are imported, or can award licenses to specific companies, giving them the right to import the amount allowed under the quota. Quotas can also take the form of a voluntary export restraint (VER), where the exporting country administers the quota.

The Cost of Quotas

Costs and pricing under a tariff regime are more transparent and predictable compared to quotas. For example, if a good is subject to a 10 percent tariff, then the good should cost about 10 percent more than it did before the tariff was imposed. With a quota, the price of that same good can increase as long as demand for the good continues and the supply remains constrained. This can mean that quota rents are ultimately more costly to domestic consumers than a tariff. In this way, quota regimes may incentivize foreign producers to upgrade the quality of their exports, leading to more direct competition with domestic producers and a higher-price product mix for consumers.

On the other hand, if foreign producers export low-quality goods under a quota regime, prices and profits for both foreign and domestic producers of low-quality goods will rise because of quotas, while domestic consumers were forced to pay more for lower quality goods.

The General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT) prohibits quotas and other quantitative restrictions under Article XI (with specific exceptions including for “security reasons”) as the GATT parties agreed that quantitative restrictions were overly restrictive and distortive compared to duties or taxes, where are permitted.

Tricky to Administer

In the case of South Korea, Brazil, and Argentina and Section 232 quotas, each country agreed to product-specific absolute quotas on 54 separate steel articles based on each country’s average annual import volumes of steel from 2015 through 2017. Argentina also accepted product specific absolute quotas on two aluminum product categories.

Steel quotas under Section 232- South Korea, Brazil and Argentina

These quotas are administered by the United States to give exporters the least possible flexibility and demonstrate how complicated quota regimes can be. Some of the quotas are absolute – once the quota is reached, no additional amount can enter the United States for any price, unless an exclusion is granted. Some quotas apply to the full calendar year (but in practice may fill the minute the quota takes effect), and others are subject to quarterly limitations. Once a quota is filled in a given quarter, importers must wait until the next quarter until they can bring the product into the United States.

The True Cost in Practice

For South Korea, Brazil, and Argentina, quotas have reduced export volumes and revenue. According to U.S. Department of Commerce data, the overall quantity of steel South Korea, Brazil, and Argentina exported to the United States in 2018 dropped significantly compared to 2017, by 26.2 percent, 14.6 percent, and 20.1 percent, respectively.

In terms of value, South Korea and Argentina’s steel exports subject to quotas dropped by $430 million and $1 million, respectively, from 2017 to 2018, while the value of Brazil’s steel exports under the quota increased by nearly $145 million in 2018. Argentina’s aluminum exports subject to the quota dropped by approximately 86.8 million kilograms from 2017 to 2018, by 32.8 percent, with a decrease in value of approximately $101 million, according to data from the U.S. International Trade Commission.

Although South Korea, Brazil, and Argentina have benefitted from generally higher prices in the United States for steel and aluminum, so far, the quotas are effectively reducing U.S. imports from these countries.

US imports of steel mill products- South Korea, Brazil and Argentina

Upsides for U.S. Steel Producers

For U.S. steel and primary aluminum producers, Section 232 tariffs, and to a limited extent, quotas, are accomplishing their goal of bolstering U.S. manufacturing capacity and allowing their firms to become profitable again — at least in the short run.

Though some proponents of the Section 232 protections do not advocate for quotas specifically, and recognize their downsides, others argue that quotas are a necessary component of the Section 232 program. Here’s why.

First, for industries seeking protection, quotas arguably provide greater certainty than tariffs that imports will be limited. Under tariffs, if importers can bear the costs, or exporters can reduce their prices, imports will continue to flow in and competition will remain high. For example, Vietnam’s 2018 exports of flat steel products, which are covered by Section 232 tariffs, increased by 79 percent compared to 2017. If strict quotas were applied instead of tariffs, Vietnam’s 2018 exports likely would have decreased.

Second, steel and aluminum manufacturers argue that without quotas, “countries that have exemptions [to the Section 232 tariffs] would likely redirect their metals exports to the United States to take advantage of higher prices there, undermining the purpose of the tariffs.”

Finally, the Trump Administration perceives that Section 232 quota agreements with U.S. trading partners and security allies, in combination with tariffs, are helping to pressure and incentivize allies to take seriously the problem of global excess capacity. U.S. unilateral tariffs may also have the opposite effect, though, – making allies less willing to work cooperatively with the United States to address fundamental global problems.

Downsides for Downstream Industries

It’s a different story for U.S. downstream manufacturers, who say quotas have entailed “severe supply constraints” and “created even more business uncertainty than tariffs”.

Importers may no longer be able to guarantee that their goods can enter under the quota, or at all. They may encounter unanticipated costs in the form of storage charges and shipping fees if the quota is filled while goods are in transit. They may face unpredictably higher prices for goods subject to a quota. They may have to find new suppliers and bear all the costs of negotiating new contracts, building new relationships, and shipping from a new location. The exclusion process implemented in August 2018 may provide some relief for importers under supply pressure, though its application may also introduce more uncertainty.

More generally, downstream manufacturers argue that Section 232 quotas and tariffs raise prices inhibiting their competitiveness, and have a chilling effect on growth, employment and investment. Although many businesses have been buoyed by the strong U.S. economy, they say that employment and sales in their industries would have increased even more were it not for tariffs and quotas raising prices. Moreover, downstream industries using steel and aluminum products employ more Americans than steel and primary aluminum manufacturers, so many jobs are vulnerable if supply contracts too much.

North America Alternative to Metal Quotas

In order to move forward with passage of the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA), the United States, Canada and Mexico first had to address the steel, aluminum and retaliatory tariffs in place since 2018. Although all parties considered quotas as a possible way forward, in the end, they agreed to lift all steel, aluminum, and related retaliatory tariffs, as well as withdraw pending WTO litigation, without imposing quotas.

The three countries agreed to prevent the importation of aluminum and steel that is unfairly subsidized and/or sold at dumped prices; prevent the transshipment of aluminum and steel made outside of Canada, Mexico, or the United States to the other country; and establish a monitoring process to detect surges of aluminum and steel imports among them.

This agreement is a positive development for two key reasons: the parties removed tariffs while avoiding quotas, and agreed to address the underlying cause of U.S. industry distress – global excess capacity.

Addressing Global Excess Capacity is Key

Though tariffs and quotas may provide short-term relief, solving underlying global excess capacity problems is critical to addressing U.S. industries’ long-term challenges, and any long-term solution will require more than the mere application of protectionist measures. The United States will have to work closely and creatively with its trading partners to address this challenge directly and to persuade the world’s largest producers — including China — to reduce global excess capacity.

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This article is a shortened version of an original report published by the Hinrich Foundation.

Feature Image Credit: Jason Welker, from “Protectionist Quotas” video on Youtube.

Holly Smith

Holly Smith is a lawyer and consultant based in Hong Kong. From 2009 to 2015, she served in the Office of the United States Trade Representative as a Director for Intellectual Property and Innovation, a Director for China Affairs, and a senior policy advisor to the Deputy U.S. Trade Representative.

This article originally appeared on TradeVistas.org. Republished with permission.