For release on Thursday August 19th, 2004 at 11.00 am.
The cold spell during the early part of the summer did not have any influence on this year's boat sales. During the period January-June 2004 three percent more boats were delivered than for the same period in the previous year. Outboard engine sales increased by 16% during the first half of the year. The Helsinki Boat Afloat Show held at the Helsinki Yacht Club venue in the Lauttasaari suburb (19-22.08) has increased the number of marine exhibits every year throughout its existence. This year the number of boats on show will be close to a record-breaking 300.
A wide and comprehensive range of marine industry products are on display at the Helsinki Yacht Club (HSK) in Lauttasaari. There are 233 smallcraft on show, including daycruisers, transit boats and motorboats. As an event for showing off sailboats, the Helsinki Boat Afloat Show is by far the most significant in Finland. This year 54 sailboats are participating. Annually, some 100 sailboats are sold in Finland. The number of boats on display would have been greater except that there was simply not enough room to accept more. Equipment exhibition stands cover an area of more than 2000 m2. The main share of the boats on show (134) are domestically produced though there is a strong showing of representatives from abroad e.g. Sweden (31), the USA (28) and Poland (19). Overall, the boats on display represent 19 countries.
The exhibition area is constantly being developed. The connecting jetty from the end of the motorboat marina to the breakwater makes it possible for visitors to walk unimpeded around the jetties in one direction. New onshore exhibition areas have been asphalted and the organisers have endeavoured to concentrate inflatables and RIBs in the same area. Additionally, a new jetty in HSK's new harbour basin has been utilised for motorboats.
Boat sales in Finland continue to increase
The unit statistics for January-June 2004 indicate that, overall, 3% more boats were delivered when compared to the corresponding period in 2003. Enterprises who participated in Finnboat's statistical survey reported that 8015 boats were sold on the domestic market. In the class below 6 meters, 7468 boats were sold (+2,3%). In the 6 to 8-meter class, 432 boats were delivered (+14%) and in the class above 8 meters 115 were delivered (+19,8%). In the largest category, boats over 10 meters can still be separately itemised. In this category, sales growth has been exceptionally powerful, i.e. forty boats were sold (+166%). The unit figures do not include sailboats since there are no statistics available at this time of the year. In 2003, 99 new sailboats (over 26 feet) were sold in Finland. When the powerful growth of large boats is taken into consideration, we can assume that, in euro terms, domestic boat sales will exceed last year's total of EUR 70 million.
Boat export statistics for the five first months of the year (January-May)
indicate a 15,8% growth in euro terms when compared with the same period last year. The value of boat exports for the first five months was EUR 57,2 million. In unit terms, that represents a total of 5920 boats exported, i.e. a growth of 9,6%. Sweden's share as an export destination for the first half of the year was a significant 34,6% (2352 boats). Norway was second with 22%, i.e. 1930 boats. France and Italy have recorded strong growth in yacht exports. On the other hand, exports to the USA fell by a substantial 71%.
At this stage also, official import statistics are available for the period January-May only. In euro terms, a 32,7% increase in imports was recorded for the first five months. Boat imports therefore continue to show powerful growth, especially when last year's total increase of 49,5% is taken into consideration. Sweden is also at the top of the list as an import source country with a 17,02% share for the period in question. A total of 188 boats were imported from Sweden. When calculated in euro terms, the USA was second with similar statistics, i.e. 16,99% and 192 boats respectively. Great Britain is in third place with 15,3% and 8 units. The total value of imports for the first five months of the year was 14,5 million euros. The 2003 imported boat's share of the total Finnish boat market was 28% in euro terms. In unit terms, the share of imported boats is significantly lower.
Wholesale delivery statistics for the period January-June indicate that unit sales of outboard motors have increased at a rate of 16% (i.e. 17864 units). Part of that growth is accounted for by an increase in re-exports to third destinations (i.e. Russia and the Baltic states). Finland delivered around two thousand engines to these countries. Nevertheless, unit sales for the year as a whole are expected to increase a little. In euro terms, growth in the sale of outboard motors can be largely attributed to the fact that the average size of engine continues to increase. Based on the statistics for January-June, the four-stroke and low-emission two-stroke engines' share of total outboard deliveries was 69,5%. When the sale of outboard engines is considered on the basis of economic regions in Finland, Helsinki and the province of Uusimaa are clearly the largest area with a share of 17 %. Varsinais-Suomi is second (9,9%) and Pirkanmaa third (6,6%). The smallest region is Häme, accounting for 1%.
For further information, please contact:
Managing Director Jouko Huju
Mobile: +358 (0)40 5509310
Tel: +358 (0)9 696 21610
Fax: +358 (0)9 696 21611
Address: Finnish Marine Industries Federation Finnboat
Käenkuja 8 A 47, FIN-00500 Helsinki, Finland