(Yicai Global) Dec. 9 -- The signing of the Regional Comprehensive Economic Partnership agreement, the world’s largest free trade deal, between countries in the Asia-Pacific region last month should lead to an increase in China’s bicycle exports, the head of German management consultancy firm Roland Berger’s China division said.
China already exports around 80 percent of the bikes it makes, Terry Gu said yesterday. Should countries in the region adjust their import tariffs as they indicated they would in the trade pact, China’s export volumes should grow.
The industry has already been experiencing a boom as the Covid-19 pandemic shuts down overseas factories and encourages people to keep fit. The country’s pedal bike output was up 21.9 percent in the first 10 months of the year from the same period last year to 35.8 million bikes, according to data released by the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology today. Electric bike production was up 33.4 percent year on year to 25.5 million units.
E-bikes will always be used for daily commuting as well as parcel and meal deliveries, Gu said. But bicycles will still occupy a considerable market share in the fields of leisure and fitness.
The emergence of bike-sharing has shaken up the traditional bicycle industry, Gu said. There are high profit margins, as much as 30 percent, for bicycle parts with a high technical threshold.
China's bike makers should upgrade their products with new lightweight materials such as carbon fiber and introduce more fashionable designs to promote sales, Gu said. Smart connectivity is a big trend and manufacturers need to consider turning themselves into tech firms.
Editors: Zhang Yushuo, Kim Taylor