For the third year in a row aluminium foil deliveries from European rollers ended the year by reaching a new record, with an uplift overall of 3% compared to 2017. This was due largely to sustained demand from overseas markets as well as steady consumption in domestic markets, particularly for thinner gauges, according to figures released by the European Aluminium Foil Association (EAFA).
Overall deliveries were 942,500 tonnes against just over 915,000 tonnes the year before. Thinner gauge foils, used mainly for flexible packaging and household foils added 4.1% year on year, while thicker gauges, used typically for semi-rigid containers and technical applications, rose by 1.1% annually. Total domestic deliveries were stable in this period, while exports continued the trend seen throughout 2018 with an increase of more than 25% overall.
The last quarter of 2018 continued to show the strong performance seen in Q3 with a total increase in output of 2.8% (228,200t vs 222,000t). While domestic deliveries remained stable, exports again lead the way with a tremendous increase of 27% compared to the last three months of 2017. Thinner gauges added 2.2% in this period, while thicker gauges improved by 3.9%.