In its tenth edition, presented here is an introduction to the World Footwear Yearbook 2020, along with an exclusive insight into the UK market provided for BFA members.

Developed by APICCAPS, the Portuguese Footwear Association, the World Footwear Yearbook analyses the most important trends within the global footwear industry, identifying and positioning the main players with regards to production, consumption, exports and imports. The full publication also includes an analysis of 84 different markets, as well as addressing the evolution of the sector’s leading global players.

The 2020 World Footwear Yearbook Includes:

  • World Footwear 2019
  • Dynamics of international trade
  • Geographcic patterns
  • Product mix
  • The big players
  • Top 5 exporters by country
  • Top 10 exporters by product type
  • Country profiles
  • World data map

The footwear industry was already in decline before the Covid-19 pandemic

2019 saw a worldwide slowdown in the footwear industry. That slowdown will certainly continue throughout 2020, given the reality of COVID-19. In 2019 footwear production and exports grew by 0.6% and 0.1%, respectively. Data are taken from the World Footwear 2020 Yearbook just released by APICCAPS, the Portuguese Footwear Association. Over the course of the last 10 years, during which the World Footwear Yearbook has been published, worldwide footwear production has increased by 21.2% and global exports have grown by 10.6% in volume and by 59.1% in value.

“Footwear production and exports grew by 0.6% and 0.1%”

Footwear production increased by 21.2% over the last decade. New record set in 2019

Worldwide footwear production has increased by 21.2% since 2010 at an average yearly growth rate of 2.2%. In 2019 the industry slowed down, growing by only 0.6%. However, this was enough to establish a new production record of 24.3 billion pairs, a record which might hold for a few years yet, given the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. The footwear industry continues to be strongly concentrated in Asia where almost 9 out of every 10 pairs of shoes are manufactured. Over the last decade, Asia has slightly strengthened its dominance in the international scene, increasing its share of world production by some 2 percentage points.

“New production record of 24.3 billion pairs”

Asia accounts for more than half of global consumption

Asia’s consumption accounts for more than half of the grand total. Europe and North America each represent 15%. At country level, China, India and the US head up the largest consumer markets. The European Union, if taken as one region, would represent the second largest consumer market for footwear with 22.1 billion pairs consumed in 2019. Nonetheless, there are still important geographic differences in consumption patterns. Per capita footwear consumption varies from between 1.6 pairs in Africa to 5.6 pairs in North America.

“22.1 billion pairs consumed in 2019”

Asia dominates exports but Europe increased market share over the last decade

15 billion pairs, representing 62% of all footwear produced, where exported in 2019. Unsurprisingly, Asia is the origin of most exports with its world share of 83.9%. Asia’s export share has decreased slightly over the last decade, as is also the case with every continent but Europe. Over the last ten years Europe has increased its share in global exports by 2.6 percentage points.

The value of footwear exports continued to increase in 2019 with a new record of $14.6 billion, 2% more than in the previous year. This growth was driven mostly by Asian countries which increased their exports by 2.8%. In Europe the growth rate was only 1.2%. In other parts of the world this rate was lower or even negative.

“Exports continued to increase in 2019 with a new record of $14.6 billion, 2% more than in the previous year”

China records declining market share

China was the source of almost 2 out of every 3 pairs of shoes exported in 2019 but its market share has been steadily declining over the last decade. Since 2010 China has lost 7 percentage points. Moving in the opposite direction, Vietnam has almost doubled its market share over the same period. India and Turkey have also shown remarkable performances throughout the decade.

“Since 2010 China has lost 7 percentage points”

Textile footwear represents one third of all traded footwear

The steep increase in the importance of textile footwear has been the most remarkable feature of the evolution of international footwear trade over the last decade. Textile footwear now represents roughly one third of all footwear trade, up from 14.6% in 2010 (value). Both rubber & plastic and leather footwear lost share to textile. Nonetheless, rubber & plastic footwear still represents almost half (47.5%) of the volume of all footwear exported worldwide and leather footwear represents 38.8% of its value.

“Textile footwear now represents roughly one third of all footwear trade, up from 14.6% in 2010 (value)”

UK Country Profile from the World Footwear Yearbook 2020



For full access to the 2020 World Footwear Yearbook, visit the link below where it can be purchased in electronic format for €200 or hard copy for €250 (includes electronic version as well).



About World Footwear

The World Footwear Yearbook is a comprehensive report that analyses core trends within the footwear sector around the world. The aim of this publication is to understand the position of the relevant countries within the footwear industry in terms of different variables (Production, Exports, Imports and Consumption) and evaluate the strategic positioning of the different sector players.

Find out more about World Footwear

The information found here has been provided by World Footwear, an organisation founded by APICCAPS, the Portuguese Footwear, Components and Leather Goods Manufacturers’ Association.