Importers have been hit with a wave of price increases caused by the decrease in exports year-on-year. As a result of the lower volumes leaving Taiwan, manufacturers are said to be gently bumping up prices to cover costs.
A total of two million bikes were exported from the country from January to May, according to the Taiwan Bicycle Exporters Association. This is comparable to the 2.42 million shipped during the same time frame in 2008 and equates to a 17.5 per cent decline. Lower orders, based around the previous year’s bad weather are said to have contributed to the shortages experienced by many at present.
TBEA Chairman Yang Ying-ming expressed that he felt the rising trend in unit prices reflected the obvious advantages of Taiwan’s bike producers in the high-end segment.
Other TBEA statistics revealed that to date this year, exports and imports of components dropped 11.4 per cent and 14.9 per cent respectively.
The price rises and output cuts vary between one manufacturer to another. However, UK bike retailers are currently complaining of widespread shortages of mid- to high-end models, particularly road bikes.
UK import figures for the first quarter of the year are also down; the current ‘bike boom’ is partly due to better weather so far this year compared to last year, leading to healthier than projected sales.