World demand for forestry equipment (including both purpose-built and converted machinery) is forecast to climb 4.5% annually to $9.3 billion in 2019. This will represent a moderation from the 2009 to 2014 pace of increase, a period during which market gains were spurred by a rebound in roundwood production from lows posted during the 2009 global recession, as well as by the institution of new engine emissions standards in the European Union (EU) and U.S., raising average equipment prices and total spending. Analyst Ken Long further notes that “sales advances will be driven in part by the ongoing mechanization of forestry operations in developing regions.” These and other trends are presented in World Forestry Equipment, a new study from The Freedonia Group, Inc., a Cleveland-based industry research firm.
Felling equipment accounts for the largest single share of world forestry equipment sales, followed by separately sold parts and attachments, and extracting equipment, with on-site processing equipment and all other forestry equipment responsible for the remaining demand. Although growth rates are not expected to vary greatly on a category-by-category basis through 2019, the fastest market gains among specific product types will be posted by harvesters and forwarders.
The U.S. and Canada together represent the largest geographic market for forestry equipment, accounting for one-third of global product demand in 2014. Western Europe is the second largest market, with a 23% share of all equipment sales in 2014, followed by the Asia/Pacific region, Eastern Europe, Latin America, and the Africa/Mideast region. The U.S. will record the largest increases of any forestry equipment market in dollar terms through 2019, supported by a pickup in economic activity and construction expenditures, a healthy capital spending environment, and growth in roundwood output. Brazil, a considerably smaller but still sizable forestry machinery market, will register larger increases in percentage terms, averaging 6.5% per year through 2019. A number of smaller national markets—including New Zealand, Poland, Finland and Indonesia—will also post above-average demand gains. On a regional basis, Latin America and Eastern Europe will record the fastest sales increases in percentage terms.