The value of natural stone industry export in 2012 was about 80 million Euros, 60 % of which came from granite. Other stone export consists mainly of soapstone products. Export’s share of stone industry sales is about 35 %. 15 million Euros worth of stone products were imported last year.
The CEO of Kiviteollisuusliitto Pekka Jauhiainen tells that year 2012 was positive for granite exports; the value of granite block export grew 3 % from the previous year, being 47.5 million Euros. End-product export value was 32 million Euros, 10 % less than in the previous year.
China is the definitive number one export and import country. Other important export countries are Italy, Germany, Sweden, France, Belgium, Poland and Russia. Pekka Jauhiainen is confident about the future of the natural stone industry. Natural stone, being an ecological, completely recyclable and durable material, meets today’s construction material requirements excellently. Challenges for the stone industry include improving mining efficiency by commercializing leftover stone as well as increasing the recognition of Finnish natural stone both in the domestic and export markets.
Natural stone quarring is safe and harmless both for the environment and people. According to Jauhiainen, the natural stone industry aims at utilizing the techniques and practices best for the environment. This should be made better known to both licensing authorities and regular people alike. Jauhiainen encourages municipalities to make use of their area’s natural stone resources in public construction.