Asia-Pacific automation spend reached $76.6bn in 2012

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The Asia-Pacific region accounts for more capital expenditures on industrial automation products than anywhere else in the world, according to a new report from IMS Research, part of IHS. Expenditures amounted to 46 per cent of global investments in 2012, equivalent to $76.6 billion.

The report, entitled ‘Capital expenditure in process and factory automation’, tracks industrial capital expenditures and analyses how investment is allocated.

Exports of machine vision solutions from Europe to Asia have also seen major growth, with exports to Asia from Germany outstripping those to the rest of Europe, according to a recent VDMA report.

The power industry represented approximately one-fifth of total industrial capital expenditures attributed to industrial automation products, the largest of all industries in Asia-Pacific.

‘Although domestic production has caught up with demand in China, further opportunities for continued investment will come through continued growing demand from an increasing and more affluent population, and also through a trend toward cleaner and more efficient energy production,’ said Andrew Robertson, senior analyst for industrial automation at IHS. ‘The study estimates that of total power capital spending in 2012 for Asia-Pacific, approximately 5 per cent went into automation products. This trails America and Europe, again illustrating the potential for further growth in automation products going into this sector in Asia-Pacific.’

Power in Asia-Pacific is overwhelmingly provided by fossil fuels, with China alone producing about half the world’s coal. But in the future, significant growth will come from the renewable and nuclear energy sector, both of which will provide major opportunities for automation component suppliers.

Wind turbines, for example, require a whole array of automation components, such as sensors, encoders, actuators, motors and drives, just for pitch and yaw control of the blades.

The global market for machine vision system components was valued at nearly $13.5 billion in 2012, according to the latest report from BCC Research. BCC expects the market to grow to $15.2 billion in 2014 and $23.5 billion in 2019, and register a five-year compound annual growth rate of 9 per cent.

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