Construction equipment sector starts the new year with momentum

The manufacturers of construction equipment with production in Germany are showing themselves to be virtually unimpressed by the current crises. A strong year-end spurt enabled them to increase turnover by 3 % in real terms for 2022.

© ClipDealer

© ClipDealer
The mood among customers is largely good, according to feedback from participants at the annual meeting of the VDMA Construction Equipment Specialist Group in Frankfurt at the beginning of February 2023. There are hardly any cancellations now. In nominal terms, the industry reached a new record last year. Even though the order intake in this period is down 21 % due to a base effect – in 2021 the order intake went through the roof as a result of the economic recovery after the pandemic outbreak – the manufacturers are still benefiting from full order books that guarantee capacity utilisation at least until the middle of this year. The only negative trend at the moment is in building construction, as higher interest rates are putting massive pressure on the residential construction sector.

Global sales of construction machinery fell by 4 % in 2022, although this was entirely due to China, the largest market. A mix of the housing crisis and zero-covid policies caused the market there to slump by 43 %. North America and the European home market, on the other hand, grew at double-digit rates despite the supply bottlenecks. In Europe, growth was concentrated in Southern and Central Eastern Europe. The largest markets, Germany, France and Great Britain, were stable.

"Nobody fears production cutbacks due to the energy crisis; our manufacturers want to expand their workforce or at least keep it stable," affirmed Franz-Josef Paus, Chairman of VDMA Construction – Equipment and Plant Engineering. The industry expects strong impulses from Europe and North America. There, especially from ConExpo in Las Vegas, which will take place from 14 to 18 March 2023. Both the Infrastructure Act and the Inflation Reduction Act should continue to provide bright prospects for European suppliers to the construction industry.

"We are impressed by this positive development, and we can only hope that this trend continues. Our construction equipment sector is currently proving resilient to the energy crisis, inflation and supply chain disruptions," Joachim Strobel, Chairman of the VDMA's Construction Equipment Specialist Group, concluded.

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