Article Number: 11609
GFA President Gottskalksson: 'These are Challenging Times' - Upbeat GFA Warns of too much Optimism
During the recent Summer Meeting in Helsinki (Finland) the Global Flooring Alliance (GFA) discussed the latest developments within the flooring trade. At the meeting almost all members were in an upbeat mood. Their respective economies are nearly all doing well, which has resulted in a growth of sales and a positive forecast for 2019. Nonetheless, the GFA members are quick to dampen too much optimism, referring to the various political developments that may affect their respective economies, such as the outcome of Brexit or the ‘trade war’ between the US and China. In order to be well prepared, the GFA has decided to make an inventory of and do a statistical research on the flooring market as a whole and/or specific segments like textile, carpet(tile), lvt.

Mr Einar Gottskalksson, President of GFA: “The Board and members of GFA will closely monitor the developments and consequences of the trade war on tariffs between the US and China. Several manufacturers and suppliers of flooring products have already increased their prices. But not only tariffs are responsible for these price increases. The costs of raw materials combined with the costs of transport and energy have also put upward pressure on prices.”

“These are challenging times. On the one hand we have to cope with price increases because of the ‘US-China tariffs trade war’, rising costs of raw materials, transport and energy, and on the other hand we notice markets changing and the trends within. We therefore decided in Helsinki to make an inventory of the existing data regarding flooring and if necessary to invest in our own research.”

Next year, the Global Flooring Alliance will celebrate its 30th anniversary. In the context of this anniversary, GFA has introduced already a number of changes in both content and appearance. With a new Code of Ethics, GFA sets out the core principles by which each member must act. Its goal is to maintain the highest of standards within our trade. Furthermore, the introduction of the new logo gives GFA a professional and modern look. The Code of Ethics and the new logo were well picked up and well-received by the trade.

GFA membership is open to one parquet importer/distributor per country to avoid conflicting national interests. GFA organizes two meetings per year. One at the Domotex trade fair in Hannover and one in the country of one of the members. The aims of the association are to promote hard surface flooring products in general and to exchange product, market and technical information in the broadest sense. The members also give each other mutual assistance in strategic purchasing opportunities.

The next meeting of the Global Flooring Alliance will be on Sunday January 13th 2019 during the Domotex fair in Hannover, Germany. More information can be acquired via the website

GFA-President Einar Gottskalksson

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