Global Sales of Mining Machinery to Reach $135 Billion By 2017

Global demand for mining machinery is forecast to expand 8.6% per year through 2017 to $135 billion despite some sales weakness in the short term. Freedonia Group analyst Matt Raskind states, “Gains will be spurred by voracious demand for mined materials in China, India, and other developing nations as industrial output increases.”

Rapid gains in mining equipment demand will occur in large developing markets such as Brazil, China, and India, with China being the largest purchaser. These and other trends are presented in World Mining Equipment, a new study from The Freedonia Group, Inc., a Cleveland-based industry market research firm.

While metals account for a smaller share of mine output than minerals and coal in volume terms, machinery used in metals mining represents the largest segment of the global market. This is due to the large amount of ore that typically must be removed per metric ton of primary metal product output. Demand for metals mining equipment will also rise at the most rapid pace through 2017, stimulated by steel and aluminum production. An expansion in construction spending and agricultural output as the global population continues to increase will boost consumption of construction aggregates and fertilizer minerals such as phosphate rock, as well as sales of related equipment. 

Mr. Raskind forecasts, “The greatest sales growth through 2017 will occur in the large Asia/Pacific region, fueled by substantial investments in new mine production capacity in several nations.”

Strong gains will also be recorded in South America, as mining companies look to develop the region’s sizable deposits of bauxite, copper, and iron ore. The dissipation of copper oversupply issues that existed in 2012 and 2013 will allow prices to recover and boost associated mining equipment demand in areas rich in copper, such as Chile and Peru.

The Africa/Mideast region will post the next fastest advances, followed by Eastern and Western Europe, and North America. In developed areas, a recovery in construction spending and manufacturing output will boost demand for nearly all types of mined materials, although an increased emphasis on environmentally friendly sources of electricity will dampen thermal coal output.