'No company can do without China'
China made up 30% of the $100bn construction equipment market in 2012
The importance of China to the global construction equipment market is highlighted by 2012 sales figures, according to Johann Sailer, chairman of the VDMA, ahead of the bauma trade fair in Munich this April.
“Although, on the whole, times are difficult, last year was a good year for our industry”, said Sailer, who added that it is not expected that 2013 will see any peaks either.
In 2012, the German construction equipment and building material machinery industry generated $16.7bn (€12.5bn) in turnover, of which construction equipment made up $10.6bn, while remainder was made up with building material, glass and ceramics machinery.
The sales figures constitute a 1% rise from 2011.
"After having seen an upturn following the 2009 economic and financial crises, the industry is now moving sideways on this decent level it managed to also achieve again in 2012," said Sailer.
Globally, mobile construction machinery worth $100bn was sold worldwide last year, according to figures from Off-Highway-Research.
Of this, nearly $30bn was sold in the Chinese market, $22bn in North America, and just $12bn in Europe. This was despite the decline of 30% in the Chinese market last year.
"As with the automotive industry, China has become an important factor for the production and sales of construction machinery," said Sailer.
"At the moment, the country is facing financing problems and surplus capacities on its domestic market. Experts believe China to have overcome this situation within the next 18 months. In the long-run, this country will be and remain the top market for construction machinery again."
Sailer said that the bauma trade fair in Munich is a chance for visitors to anticipate the direction manufacturers of construction equipment are moving.
"This event, which takes place every three years, in itself has always inspired new business opportunities. It also is the number one indicator for upcoming market trends," he said.