The German construction equipment industry grew by 3% last year and the VDMA expects it to rise again this year.
Annual turnover of 9.3bn (US$9.8bn) in 2016 equated to a 3% rise for German manufacturers on the previous year’s figures, despite an overall downturn in the global economy. The country’s domestic market grew by 20% in the 12 months, achieving a level close to the record year of 2007 with sales of 3bn (US$3.2bn).
“In view of this high level, a further growth seems hardly possible, even if our customers continue to make good business in Germany,” said Johann Sailer, chairman of the construction equipment and building material machinery industry association of the German engineering federation, VDMA.
The positive results are even more impressive when compared with those of world sales of construction equipment, which declined by 1% over the same 12-month period. Markets in the UK and in Northern America fell in 2016, with Northern America recording a double-digit sales decline, but the expectation is that more stability will come this year as infrastructure programs and investments announced by the US-administration stimulate demand in the construction industry as a whole.
In Latin America, markets in the region were dragged down by the weakness of the Brazilian construction industry, but in Asia, after four years of decline, China has seen a return to growth in 2016. Additionally, strong investment in developments of India’s roads saw the nation’s construction equipment market increase by 30%, with growth expected to continue on in to 2017.
“We will only keep growing in the future if we further strive for international solutions and cooperations,” said Sailer. “In a highly specialized sector like ours, where special machines are not available in every region of the world, open markets are highly essential. We all depend on free trade and good economic sense. This applies for Europe and the United States alike,” he added.
March 1, 2017