Machinery IndustryExports > Export of machines from Germany to China

Export of machines from Germany to China 2008 - 2019

Exports of the German machinery industry are lagging behind China's growth since 2012

Up to 2014 China had become the most important export market for machines from Germany outside the EU, having substituted the USA in 2009. How have machinery industry's exports responded to China's growth?

Update March 30th, 2020 - China's industrial production since 2008 is analyzed by a separate report. It showed rising growth rates from 2008 to 2011, which have been softening since 2012.

It is to consider that the growth rates are related to an ever larger absolute basis. Regardless whether growth rates are changing, under the line the fact remains of a continuous growing industrial production in China.

For a better comparison, the following diagram refers the industrial production of China and the export quota of German machines to China to a common starting point, namely the year 2008, set at 100.

The result of this comparison speaks for itself:


  • While China's industrial production grew by 159% between 2008 and 2019, machine exports from Germany only increased by 82%.

In 2019, machinery exports from Germany with an index of 182, are only slightly above their high of 178 index points in 2011.

The exports of the German machinery industry to China and China's industrial production from 2008 to 2019.

With the dynamically increasing industrial production machine exports from Germany to China steeply stepped up (red line). The export quota increased by 77% from 6.6% (2008) to 11.5% (2011). These increasing machine exports worked as an important ease during the world economic crisis 2008/2009 avoiding even stronger declines of machine production.


At this time China substituted the USA as the most important export market outside the EU.


However, after machine exports peaked with an export share of 11.5% in 2011 they were growing clearly slower than the growth rates of industrial production in China would suggest.


Finally in 2015 the US have again become the most important export market for machines from Germany outside EU, replacing China from first rank.

So it is not that much about growth in China as it is about the mechanical engineering industry itself why machine exports are using the potential of a growing industrial production since 2012 to a relatively lesser extent.

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