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International News From the Field: Europe

Europe’s economic recovery continues to struggle with a resurgence of the pandemic, jeopardizing progress. Industrial production was down double-digits from a year ago but has been improving since June to a recent -7.7%. September’s Purchasing Manager’s Index was above 50 for most EU countries, signaling an increase in new orders. Automotive continues to be sluggish, but the focus on electric vehicles bodes well for future opportunities. Medical, solar, and wind energy are growing, and some in-person trade fairs have resumed. For more intel, read on.

  • The capital goods industries of the leading economies of Europe have raised expectations. There are signs of some recovery in retail sales, industrial production, and exports.

  • The European medical devices market is projected to reach $61 billion by 2025 from an estimated $49 billion in 2020 at a CAGR of 4.7% during the forecast period. The factors driving the growth of this market are the rising geriatric population, a large and established medical technology industry, the increasing number of surgical procedures, the growing need for cost-containment in the healthcare industry, and the availability of funding for research and product innovation. The orthopedic device segment is to have the largest share of the growth during the forecast period. Poland’s medical device market is projected to grow at the highest CAGR during the same period.

  • Early this month, BorgWarner completed the $3.3 billion acquisition of Delphi Technologies in a move to be “better positioned with a more comprehensive portfolio of industry-leading propulsion products and systems across combustion, hybrid and electric vehicles.” This is another indication of the bright future in Europe for electric vehicles.

  • Recent months have seen a year-over-year rise in the number of European contracts for power generation solutions, primarily in solar technology. The bulk are in France, the Netherlands, the U.K., and Spain. Windfarms continue to expand, particularly in Germany. By volume, Q2 of 2020 is estimated to be higher by 62% compared to Q2 of 2019. Mergers and acquisitions in the sector are frequent. Some of them are multibillion-dollar transactions.

  • The autumn season for the manufacturing technology shows of Europe is under way, including those rescheduled from earlier in the year. The picture is very mixed, with some shows taking place in person with limited scope, some as only virtual, and some rescheduled further out.

Manufacturing Technology Shows in Europe

  1. BI-MU, Italy’s main manufacturing technology show, was held in Milan, Oct. 14-17. It hosted some 350 exhibitors, 30% of whom were from abroad. It was a scaled-down version, occupying only two pavilions of the Fiera Milano. UCIMU, the organizer of the event, reported more than 9,000 visitors over the four days. As expected, foreign visitors, who made up 3.5% of total attendees, were mostly from neighboring Germany, Switzerland, France, and Austria.

  2. In September and October, two regional machine tool shows were held in Poland: STOM in Kielce and TOOLEX in Katowice. Both shows had reduced exhibitors and visitors but illustrate the need of manufacturers to market their products and generate sales leads.

  3. The International Trade Fair for Grinding Technology GrindTec is to take place as scheduled in Augsburg, Germany, Nov. 10-13. Strict health and safety protocols will be in place. Similarly, the internationally important Tube Exhibition in Duesseldorf will take place Dec. 7-11. It was originally scheduled for March.

  4. The Ukrainian International Kyiv Technical Fair 2020 will still take place Nov. 24-27.

  5. ITM Industry Europe, the main annual Polish technology exhibition in Poznan, had been rescheduled for November but has now been canceled and will resume its regular time slot in June 2021.

  6. The U.K.’s MACH Birmingham 2020, originally rescheduled for Jan. 2021, has been canceled and will resume its usual cycle in April 2022.

For more information, please contact Hubert Sawicki at HSawicki@AMTonline.org.