Aluminium in the Building Industry: Positive Forecasts up to 2021

Encouraging news comes from France, a growing market with Italy ranking third as supplier of doors, windows and curtain walls, reinforcing the positive forecasts of the 2019 Unicmi Report

by Roberto Guccione

The latest edition of Batimat, the historical French trade show for the building industry held in Paris from the 4th to the 8th of November, sent out encouraging signals for Italian SMEs which produce doors, windows and curtain walls. This is shown by a note issued by Caseitaly, the format aimed at helping the globalization of Italian companies manufacturing technical components for the building envelope, promoted by the industry’s four reference organizations (Acmi, Anfit, Assites and Pile), with the support of the Finco Federation (Federation of Industries, Products, Plants, Services and Specialized Works for Buildings and Maintenance) and by the decisive support provided by MISE (Italian Ministry for Economic Development) by mean of Ice (The Agency for the promotion abroad and the globalization of Italian companies). With over 1,700 exhibitors and 270 thousand visitors, Batimat confirms that the French building industry, after a crisis which lasted a decade, today seems to be going through an upswing. Sales of new homes increased by 4.7% and building permits have also grown by 1.3%. All in all, FBB (the French Building Federation) envisages for 2019 an increase in building activity of 1.3%. In 2018 France imported 916.8 million euro worth of doors, windows and curtains, a 5% increase with respect to 2017. Italy is the third supplier (after Germany an China) in this industry with 10.9% of the market share; the main category of products imported by France is doors and windows, which on their own represent 25% of the total (+5.8%).

The trend is also positive in Italy
Good news from France confirms the positive trend already underlined by the 2019 Unicmi report on the Italian building envelope market, presented in July. This report, prepared by the study centre of Unicmi (National Union of the Envelope, Door and Window Metal Construction Industries) is a privileged observatory on the trends of the market, which is growing again, driven by the upswing of investments in the construction domain (+3.1% in 2018). The outlook for the development in the demand of doors, windows and curtain walls are positive and superior to the expected growth of the GDP, both in 2019 and in the 2020-2021 period, with a growth rate of about 2.5% per year. In 2019 the demand should exceed 4.8 million Euro and will be driven by renovation in the residential segment, which on its own is worth over 3 billion Euro in investments. The sales of aluminium doors and windows should reach 1,549 million Euro in 2019.
In 2021, 8 million units of windows sold should once more be exceeded and a mild upswing in the demand for doors and windows for new residential buildings should continue.
Regarding curtain walls, the non-residential segment, which is forecast to grow, will drive the demand even in the 2020-2021 period, when the Italian market will come close to 600 million Euro, approaching pre-crisis values. The share of revenues generated by exports for Italian curtain wall manufacturers almost reaches 40%. The Unicmi report underlines that tax benefits are a structural component of door and window demand: their value reaches around 1.7 billion Euro, with a total demand in the residential sector which is slightly over 3 billion Euro.