International sales for water and ice exports by country totaled US$1.2 billion in 2018. The overall value of exported water and ice rose by an average 15% for all exporting countries since 2014 when water and ice shipments were valued at $1 billion. From 2017 to 2018, the value of globally exported water and ice improved by 3.1%.
Among continents, Asia sold the highest dollar worth of exported water and ice during 2018 with shipments valued at $734 million or 63.1% of the global total. In second place were European exporters at 24.8% while 10.1% of worldwide water and ice shipments originated from North America. Smaller percentages came from suppliers in Oceania (1.3%) led by New Zealand and Australia, Latin America (0.5%) excluding Mexico but including the Caribbean then Africa (0.1%).
The 6-digit Harmonized Tariff System code prefix is 220190 for ice, snow and ordinary natural water.
Ice Exports by Country
Below are the 15 countries that exported the highest dollar value worth of water and ice during 2018.
- China: US$649.1 million (55.8% of total water/ice exports)
- United States: $101.7 million (8.7%)
- France: $95 million (8.2%)
- Turkey: $46 million (4%)
- Norway: $35 million (3%)
- Belgium: $29.6 million (2.5%)
- Germany: $28.3 million (2.4%)
- Iceland: $15.6 million (1.3%)
- Canada: $14.9 million (1.3%)
- Malaysia: $14 million (1.2%)
- United Kingdom: $13.2 million (1.1%)
- Italy: $11.3 million (1%)
- New Zealand: $11 million (0.9%)
- Russia: $9.6 million (0.8%)
- Netherlands: $9.4 million (0.8%)
By value, the listed 15 countries shipped 93.2% of all water and ice exports in 2018.
Among the top exporters, the fastest-growing water/ice exporters since 2014 were: Netherlands (up 236.4%), New Zealand (up 132.7%), Russia (up 90.6%) and Iceland (up 58.3%).
Those countries that posted declines in their exported water/ice sales were led by: Italy (down -37.6%), Malaysia (down -27.2%), Canada (down -16.9%), Norway (down -8.1%) and Germany (down -5.9%).
The following countries posted the highest positive net exports for water and ice during 2018. Investopedia defines net exports as the value of a country’s total exports minus the value of its total imports. Thus, the statistics below present the surplus between the value of each country’s exported water and ice and its import purchases for that same commodity.
- China: US$627 million (net export surplus up 17.9% since 2014)
- France: $80.2 million (down -1.5%)
- Turkey: $45.6 million (up 10.4%)
- Norway: $33.7 million (down -8.8%)
- Iceland: $15.1 million (up 54.5%)
- Germany: $12.8 million (down -31%)
- Malaysia: $10.4 million (down -45.4%)
- New Zealand: $10.3 million (up 164.7%)
- Thailand: $7.6 million (up 231.5%)
- Italy: $6.6 million (down -47.1%)
- Russia: $5.5 million (up 210%)
- Greece: $5.2 million (up 35.5%)
- Spain: $4.6 million (up 19.8%)
- Czech Republic: $3.8 million (down -3.1%)
- Indonesia: $2 million (up 387%)
The People’s Republic of China has the highest surplus in the international trade of water and ice. In turn, this positive cashflow confirms China’s competitive advantage for this specific product category.
The following countries posted the highest negative net exports for water and ice during 2018. Investopedia defines net exports as the value of a country’s total exports minus the value of its total imports. Thus, the statistics below present the deficit between the value of each country’s imported water and ice purchases and its exports for that same commodity.
- Hong Kong: US-$611.7 million (net export deficit up 31.8% since 2014)
- United States: -$102.9 million (up 17.6%)
- Macao: -$36.4 million (up 3.8%)
- Netherlands: -$24.8 million (up 131.9%)
- Singapore: -$22.8 million (up 14.4%)
- Belgium: -$22.3 million (up 259.9%)
- Ireland: -$16.9 million (up 23.3%)
- Mexico: -$15.1 million (down -20.4%)
- United Arab Emirates: -$15.1 million (up 70.1%)
- Japan: -$10.9 million (down -68.9%)
- United Kingdom: -$9.8 million (up 65.2%)
- Canada: -$7.5 million (reversing a $14.4 million surplus)
- Cambodia: -$4.05 million (up 34.2%)
- Saudi Arabia: -$4.04 million (down -20.2%)
- Luxembourg: -$3.6 million (up 155.8%)
Hong Kong incurred the highest deficit in the international trade of water and ice. In turn, this negative cashflow highlights Hong Kong’s competitive disadvantage for this specific product category but also signals opportunities for water and ice-supplying countries that help satisfy the powerful demand.
Ice Maker Machinery Exporters
According to global trading platform Alibaba, the following companies manufacture ice-making machinery available for international sales. The home-country country for each business is shown within parentheses:
- Dongguan Hengxing Kitchen Equipment Co, Ltd (China)
- Hangzhou Icedeer Refrigeration Equipment Co, Ltd (China)
- IKLIM Hardward & Machinery SDN BHD (Malaysia)
- Rosen Ice Machines & Refrigeration Systems (Turkey)
- Shenzhen Sindeice Systems Co, Ltd (China)
- Soluzioni e Referenze Srls (Italy)
- US Ice Machine Manufacturing Co (United States)
See also Top Soft Drinks Exporters by Country, Beer Exports by Country and Top Vodka Exporters
Alibaba, Supplier showroom for ice maker machines. Accessed on June 16, 2018
Forbes Global 2000 rankings, The World’s Biggest Public Companies. Accessed on June 7, 2019
Investopedia, Net Exports Definition. Accessed on June 7, 2019
The World Factbook, Field Listing: Exports – Commodities, Central Intelligence Agency. Accessed on June 7, 2019
Trade Map, International Trade Centre. Accessed on June 7, 2019
Wikipedia, Icemaker. Accessed on June 16, 2018