Austria - Selling and buying
Reaching the consumers
However price is becoming a key factor in purchasing. More and more sectors are becoming price-driven.
Still the per capita income in Austria is high and consumers are rich, sophisticated and highly diverse in their interests and tastes.
The principal trading zones of the country are Vienna, Vorarlberg and Burgenland, with important areas like Styria and Tirol.
Since 1995, Austria has set its sights on Eastern European countries, thus changing its import channels. This phenomenon further strengthened after 2005 with the entry of these countries into the European Union.
In 2003, the retail food market was valued at 14.3 billion Euros, an increase of 3.9% as compared to 2002. Two groups dominate this market:
- Rewe austria (German origin) has a 30.2% market-share and is the market leader in the food distribution.
- Spar (Austrian origin) has 28.2% of the market-share.
Discount stores also constitute a huge market as they account for 25.6% of the total turnover of the retail food market. Hofer controls 16.2% of the market-share which is far beyond Lidl with only 2.6%.
Food distribution is very consolidated and is dominated by a few big groups which control 2/3rd of total sales in the country. Amongst these, the major foreign groups are Bipa dealing in drugstores, Lutz and Ikea dealing in furniture.
The retail market is dominated by big German groups like Markant and Metro. The largest chain of stores in the country belongs to the group Billa.
Market access procedures
Some form of non-tariff barriers also exist in the pharmaceutical, telecom, biotechnology, refrigerant, and legal and accounting services sectors.
As part of the "SAFE" standards advocated by the World Customs Organization (WCO), the European Union has set up a new system of import controls, the "Import Control System" (ICS), which aims to secure the flow of goods at the time of their entry into the customs territory of the EU. This control system, part of the Community Program eCustomer, has been in effect since January 1, 2011. Since then, operators are required to pass an Entry Summary Declaration (ENS) to the customs of the country of entry, prior to the introduction of goods into the customs territory of the European Union.
Organizing goods transport
Domestic business directories
- FEEI - Association of the Electric and Electronic Industry
- AUSTROSPACE, the association of Austrian space industries and research institutions
- Association of the Austrian Clothing Industry
- aaa (Austrian Automotive Association)
- FCIO (Austrian Chemical Industry Association)
- FOPI – Association of the research-based Pharmaceutical Industry
- Pharmig – Austrian Association of the Phamaceutical Industry
- FFMI ( Association of Austrian Machinery & Metalware)