CHINESE CONSTRUCTION EQUIPMENT MARKETS: A REVIEW OF 2015 AND A FORECAST TO 2020
Off-Highway Research's Annual Reviews are summaries of construction sold by product type and by country looking at the last five year's sales data and looking forward for the next five years.
Typical coverage includes: Country Analyses (fifteen European countries), Equipment Analyses (fifteen product types), Production Analyses and International Prespectives.
The Market in 2015
The market for construction equipment in China has been in decline for the last four years, and there was a particularly sharp fall of 41 per cent in 2015. Demand has fallen by an astonishing 72 per cent since the peak of sales in 2011.
The slump in demand during 2015 has resulted in the size of the domestic market returning to the levels last seen in 2002, a time when the market was in its early stages of rapid growth and was being driven by both domestic supply and active imports of used equipment. While China rose rapidly to become the world’s largest market in the period 2009-2011, the loss of 72 per cent in just four years has imposed enormous pressures on every domestic manufacturer. Few if any of them are now profitable, even though all of them have taken exceptional steps to reduce their costs.
It is evident that investment activities have remained weak as a whole, as shown by the slowing rate of FAI growth, which implies that there has been a decline in new construction activity, and demand for equipment has continued to decline because of the scarcity of work. The situation has been made worse by the large machine population of relatively underused machines, which deters owners from buying new equipment at a time when utilisation rates are very low. Indeed, it is thought that machines on average are only being used at 20-30 per cent of their capacity. The return on investment remains very poor, and machine buyers now need much longer to pay off their loans. Buying confidence is naturally very weak, and this is highlighted by end-users’ increasing preference for rental and used equipment to undertake work.