Japan Electric Cable Shipment Increases for 3 Years

Japanese electric wire and cable shipment increased by 1.8% to 871,442 tonnes in copper in 2006 from 2005 among about 140 electric wire and cable makers which belong to Japanese Electric Wire & Cable Makers’ Association, announced by the Association on Friday. The annual shipment increased from previous year for 3 straight years. The shipment increased for automobile, power companies and electric appliances, while decreasing slightly for building construction and wholesalers, the largest demand field in the domestic electric cable market.The shipment increased for automotive wiring harness and cables for electric appliances in 2006 thanks to steady production of automobile and consumer electronics in Japan. The shipment for power companies increased from previous year for 2 consecutive years when domestic power companies advanced capital investment to renew old facilities.Electric cable shipment also increased by 6.2% for plant construction and expansion by domestic large-scaled manufacturing industries such as steel makers, shipbuilders and chemical industry, which represents as ÔÇťother domestic” category in the statistics.The annual shipment decreased by 0.5% for building construction and wholesalers in 2006 from 2005, which represented about 45% of the total shipment, when the monthly shipment decreased from a year ago for 7 straight months since June 2006. Market sources analyzed the shipment slowed down especially for spot demand due to much higher copper prices and electric cable prices.Another factor of lower growth rate was remarkably high demand for the category in 2005. Shipment volume kept almost as flat as 2005 in 2006. The domestic market seemed not to shrink for building construction and wholesalers.