This issue, in honor of INTERMAT 2015 in Paris, France this April (event information, 10283874) — co-located for the first time with World of Concrete Europe — we took the opportunity to delve a little deeper into the European construction and agricultural markets.
According to the Construction Equipment and Building Material Machinery Association (VDMA), the European construction equipment industry will be hitting another slow down as it takes on the Stage V emissions standards set in motion for 2019/2020 implementation for mobile equipment.
In 2015, many manufacturers of construction equipment will be again investing in emissions reduction technologies to meet 97/88/EC level requirements currently under review. According to Joachim Strobel, Deputy Chairman of the VDMA and Managing Director of Liebherr EMtec GmbH, level 5 emissions standards are achievable technologically, so the main focus of the discussion is in regards to the tight implementation deadlines for mobile machinery which includes January 1, 2020 for mobile equipment between 56 and 130 kW, and January 1, 2019 for all other machines. The industry is fighting to achieve prolonged deadlines to predict, plan and implement.
The overall European construction equipment market improved 7% in 2014 from the previous year, due mainly to the strong demand for earth moving and road construction equipment. Germany itself improved 9% in 2014 and anticipates another positive growth year in 2015, according to Strobel, though probably not as strong due to limited room for improvement in the domestic market.
Read more on the European construction equipment market on page 26 in, Constructing the Europe of tomorrow.
CEMA, the European Association for Manufacturers of Agricultural Machinery based in Brussels, predicts Europe's agricultural equipment market to drop a predicted 5 to 10% in 2015.
Compared to 2014, sales in the two major markets of Germany and France are believed to fall in the range of 7 and 10% respectively. Similar developments are expected in other key markets such as the UK (-5%) or the Netherlands (-5 to -10%). Weaker market expectations for 2015 follow an overall decline of sales of around 5 to 10% in Europe in 2014 (compared to 2013). In the CIS Region in particular lower sales are expected as a result of the political crisis in Ukraine and Russian import restrictions for combine harvesters and agricultural commodities.
Major reasons for lower sales in Europe include the natural economic cyclical of decline following a boom, such as the agricultural machinery sales boom between 2011 and 2013. Also, lower commodity prices reduce a farmer's income which limits investments and future equipment purchases.
Aside from the European equipment market analysis, we also delved deeper into the fluid power industry with four articles covering a range of product launches, electrohydraulic control usage and education investment. Be sure to check out this Special Section starting on page 32.
Still not enough fluid power content? Head online to our fluid power channel at www.oemoffhighway.com/fluid-power and get more of the news, products and trends happening in the off-road market.