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Pipes & Inspection Solutions in Europe 2021

IC Market Tracking

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Eastern Europe Improves Overall Market Situation for Pipes and Inspection Solutions

“The market for infrastructure pipes (irrigation and drainage) will decline by 8.4% in 2020 due to the COVID pandemic”. The rebound in the following years will be at an average annual growth rate of 4.5%. The segment for inspection solutions (e.g. inspection shafts, maintenance openings, drainage systems) will also record a minus of 8.4% this year. However, the rebound for inspection solutions will not be as strong and will only amount to 2.5% per year.

Eastern Europe benefits from EU subsidies

In addition to prices, sales volumes on the market for pipes in the countries under investigation (Spain, Italy, Germany, Poland, Ukraine, Romania, Bulgaria, Hungary) are also down by 6.6% this year. The developed markets are particularly affected by these declines. The less developed markets such as Romania (-0.8%) or Ukraine (-2.6%) are defying the crisis, while Italy, for example, is in for a 9.4% drop in sales volume for 2020. In Germany the market volume will shrink from 1.45 billion euros to 1.33 billion euros this year. This also affects the duration of recovery. While countries such as Bulgaria, Romania or Poland will reach their pre-corona level as early as 2021, the catch-up process in western countries such as Spain and Italy will continue until 2023 and beyond. “The less developed countries will benefit mainly from EU funding to expand water and wastewater infrastructure,” explains Julia Tarasenko, author of the study. Prices will start to rise again this year after a 3.2% decline in 2020, mainly due to government investment in infrastructure.

PVC Dominates

PVC is by far the most important product group, both in terms of sales volume and turnover. PVC has a market share 49.5% by value, followed by polypropylene (PP) pipes at 19.1%. This year, PVC has lost 9.4% of its sales, and the decline in sales of PP pipes is in the double figures. PVC is also ahead in terms of sales volume, with a share of 35.6%. Here again, PP pipes are in second place with a share of 21.8% (as of 2019).

Home Advantage

The market for pipes and inspection solutions is highly fragmented in Europe, which is reflected in the fact that no company holds a dominant market position outside its country of origin. This is also the reason why the top 10 companies in the eight countries surveyed account for only 33.7% of the total market. Among them are companies such as Aliaxis, Ostendorf, Pipelife, Uponor and Wavin.

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