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China 2020 excavator sales surge 39% YoY, a historical high

China’s sales of excavators and other heavy machinery for both domestic and export customers soared by 39% on year to reach 327,605 units for 2020, refreshing the sales record, according to the latest data released by the China Construction Machinery Association (CCMA). The surge in full-year sales was faster than the 16% on-year rise seen in 2019.
Among the total sales for 2020, some 10.6% or 34,741 units were for export, up by 30.5% on year, though domestic sales still accounted for the majority at 89.4% or 292,864 units, being up 40.1% on year, according to CCMA.

The CCMA survey was among the 25 major excavator producers nationwide. Sales last January declined on year as the Chinese New Year holiday for 2020 came earlier than in 2019, and the sudden COVID-19 outbreak within in late January also hurt the sales in February, a month when usually yellow goods sales are robust, Mysteel Global notes. 



Data Source: CCMA

Excavator sales recovered remarkably from March, and the on-year growth over April-December hovered high above 50%, which were because of the resumption of economic activity after the virus lockdowns ended as well as the measures adopted by the central government to expand investments into infrastructure that boosted demand for heavy construction machinery.

Last December alone, China’s sales of yellow goods totalled 31,530 units, higher by 56.4% on year, among which some 4,211 units were exported, up by 44.4% on year, and domestic sales contributed 27,319 units, or up more substantially by 58.5% on year, the data showed.

Market sources expected the robust sales to continue into 2021. “Maybe another increase of 5-15% will be seen this year, even though the base for 2020 is already high,” a Beijing-based market insider said. “China’s supportive policies regarding infrastructure will probably continue, and I believe the further resumption of the global economy this year will drive up exports further too,” he added.

In China, excavators are widely used in construction work, including both traditional infrastructure projects such as roads and bridges, and new-model infrastructure programs such as 5G signal towers, charging stations for electric vehicles and urban renewal, according to the analyst, who indicated those projects would continue to boost yellow goods sales in 2021. China plans to build over 600,000 5G base stations this year, Mysteel Global learns.

China’s domestic excavator sales breakdown by model size

Month

28.5t

18.5-28.5t

18.5t

Total

Dec

3,517

7,451

16,351

27,319

YoY

50.2%

120.5%

42%

58.5%

Jan-Dec

38,455

77,260

177,149

292,864

YoY

28.4%

49.8%

38.9%

40.1%

Source: CCMA

Written by Anna Wu, wub@mysteel.com
Edited by Russ McCulloch, russ.mcculloch@mysteel.com