May 11, 2018

At China Glass, Trends Reflect Global Challenges

by Guest Blogger

Quality, labor, and performance—they’re what every fenestration manufacturer is after.

This was one of my major takeaways from the China Glass show that took place in late April. I had the opportunity to attend the show on Quanex’s behalf. I made a number of important customer connections and was able to absorb some of the biggest trends impacting the Chinese fenestration industry currently.

Here are some of my biggest takeaways:

An increasing need for energy performance. In part due to its rapidly expanding building stock, China has substantially increased the enforcement of energy-saving building codes. As suggested by a 2015 report from the Paulson Institute, under the country’s current development plan, China’s building sector would use more energy than any other country’s building sector by 2030, and would double by 2050. Meanwhile, Passive House certification is becoming increasingly valued

As such, energy-efficient windows and doors are a hot topic in the Chinese market, and that was reflected at the China Glass show. Consumers are beginning to see the value of higher quality and performance, creating higher demand.

But are they seeing the value—and willing to pay for it? That remains a struggle, as there exist significant performance gaps across differing regions in the country, along with a significant amount of low quality products that occupy the market and create low-level price competition.
All of this while Chinese manufacturers struggle with increasingly expensive labor costs

The allure of automation. We’ve seen adoption of automated technology in the North American market increase over the past several years, and fenestration manufacturers in China are doing the same. Automation was a major trend at the show, with numerous equipment providers showcasing their new solutions. Buyers are looking to overcome their labor woes while providing a more consistent, higher quality product.

And that’s exactly what automated systems are suited to deliver. With the utilization of warm-edge spacer technology, forward-thinking manufacturers can deliver the products that the market increasingly requires at competitive prices. After the China Glass show, it will be interesting to keep our eyes on how these trends continue to develop.

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Posted: May 11, 2018 by Guest Blogger Filed under: China, glass, tradeshows