Without putting out a press release, the Spanish shoe industry association, Fice, has informed us that the country's total exports of footwear declined by 2 percent to €1,364.3 million in the first six months of this year.

Imanol Martinez, Fice's director of marketing and international business development, blamed Brexit, the trade war between the U.S. and China, the uncertainty generated by a possible international economic recession and profound changes in the distribution channels. He pointed out, however, that exports of leather shoes rose by 0.13 percent in value, including a 2.3 percent increase for women's leather shoes to €509 million.

Confirming Assocalzaturifici's figures, the Spanish shoe export statistics for the six-month period indicate a positive trend for the industry in the Italian market, where Spain's exports grew by 7.55 percent in value to €183.5 million, with an increase in volume of 1.21 percent to 10.9 million pairs. Italy was the second-largest export market for Spanish footwear after France, where exports fell by 2.36 percent in value to €248.5 million, while rising in volume by 0.37 percent to 18.9 million pairs.

Germany came third with exports of 7.1 million pairs worth €130.1 million. They went down by 3.73 percent in value and by 3.03 percent in volume. Declines were also recorded in Portugal and the U.K., where exports fell in volume and value by 3.55 percent and 10.13 percent, respectively.

In the important U.S. market, the fourth-largest after Germany, Spanish shoe exports were relatively stable in terms of value, declining by just 0.22 percent to €116.1 million, but the number of pairs went up by 13.54 percent to 2.8 million. The average export price declined by 12.12 percent to €41.28 per pair.

China was the star with an increase in the export value of 32.57 percent to €37.2 million, despite a drop in volume of 7.60 percent to 646,000 pairs. Shipments to Hong Kong were relatively flat in value, but they were off by 34.05 percent in volume. Average exports prices per pair were on the rise in Hong Kong by 52.82 percent to €74.97, and in China by 43.48 percent to €57.69.

In Russia, Spanish shoe exports were down by 13.51 percent in value and by 21.75 percent in volume, amounting to 697,000 pairs priced at €23.89 per pair, with an increase of 10.53 percent in the average price.

Spain's trade deficit in footwear increased as imports went up by 8.7 percent to €1,567.5 million. In terms of volume, they grew by 4.8 percent to 169.8 million pairs.