In the first nine months of 2018, Spain exported 122.7 million pairs of shoes for a value of €2.108 billion. Fice, the Spanish shoe industry federation, said this amounted to decreases of 1 percent in value and a 3.6 percent in volume from the comparable period of 2017. But it pointed out that exports of leather shoes went up by 1 percent in value and by 0.4 percent in volume, representing 56.4 percent of the total export turnover.

As usual, the chief export market for Spanish shoes was the European Union, which accounted for 80 percent of the volume and 72 percent of the value. Spain's shoe exports to the rest of the EU fell by 3.8 percent in value and by 5.1 percent in volume. In total, Spain delivered 98 million pairs to the region over the period, generating sales of €1.513 billion. The top markets within the EU were France, Italy, Germany, Portugal and the U.K.

Exports outside of the EU rose by 7.2 percent in value during the period, reaching a level of 24.8 million pairs worth €595 million, which represented 28 percent of total Spanish shoe exports.

In Fice's estimation, the rather significant increase in non-EU exports resulted from a generalized strategy of market diversification by the Spanish shoe industry. The main markets outside the EU were the U.S. (€178 million) and China (€47 million), followed by Mexico, Turkey, South Korea, Canada, Australia and Israel.

Spain's top shoe-exporting region was the Comunidad Valenciana, with 44 percent of the total value. Galicia ranked second, with a 15 percent share. Out of all the main regions, only Aragón recorded higher exports.

During the same nine-month period, Spain imported 251.8 million pairs of shoes, worth €2.318 billion, for an increase of 2.3 percent in volume and 0.1 percent in value.