Despite Corona and Brexit

Upward trend: German kitchen industry in Great Britain

The UK, an important export market for the German kitchen industry, is recovering, reports the Arbeitsgemeinschaft Die Moderne Küche e.V. (AMK).

May 26 2021

In the first quarter of 2021, exports by German kitchen furniture manufacturers to the British market climbed 18 percent to 31.5 million euros, according to the German Federal Statistical Office. 

Sales had plummeted in 2020 (minus 16.4 percent) due to the Corona lockdown and Brexit uncertainties. On the development in the first quarter, Volker Irle, managing director of the Arbeitsgemeinschaft Die Moderne Küche e.V. (AMK), assesses. (AMK), as "very pleasing." 

Also the manufacturers are also positive. Household appliance specialist and ambista member Miele & Cie. KG comments: "Thanks to the Brexit agreement, which was agreed just in time, business in the UK, which is very important for Miele, is continuing virtually without restrictions. Imports as such have also largely normalized, although minor details of a customs nature still need to be clarified. Currently, the sales curve for the UK is clearly pointing upwards again after the Corona-related restrictions of last year." 

Largely smooth customs clearance processes 

This is also confirmed by Christian Käsemann, who looks after exports for the British market at kitchen furniture manufacturer Ballerina-Küchen Heinz-Erwin Ellersiek GmbH. A forwarding service provider commissioned by Ballerina declares the deliveries to British customs. A customs agent takes care of the entire process and payment of the declaration fees. No customs duties are payable on the kitchen furniture. Under the Trade and Cooperation Agreement between the EU and the United Kingdom, the products are exempt from customs duties. 

In the first quarter, business with British customers stabilized, and then a noticeable recovery occurred with the relaxations for the furniture trade in April, Käsemann reports. "Demand from the UK is picking up noticeably at the moment." As in Germany, the home had gained in importance during the Corona crisis, and the pent-up demand of British consumers with regard to their furnishings was great. 

Julius Blum GmbH agrees. "We are currently on a growth course there," says Martin Schaefer, the sales manager responsible. "The recovery is going faster than expected." He adds that deliveries to the British market have now settled in well, after there were initially isolated delays in customs clearance at the beginning of the year. However, due to the bureaucratic hurdles, a significantly higher workload is required.

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