‘Steady’ growth of 5-7% forecast for global industrial robots market
Global economic volatility and supply chain disruptions are having a huge impact on the market for global industrial robots, which has led to project delays and decreased spending on automation projects. Despite this, long-term projections remain steady, with electric vehicle (EV) manufacturing and new energy related applications fueling global demand for industrial robots and growth of 5-7% forecast for the sector out to 2027.
Interact Analysis has published updated forecasts for the industrial robot market, and they mark the most significant revisions compared to the 2022 version of the report. From 2023 onwards, the market intelligence specialist predicts investment confidence will continue to be low in the short term, causing end-users to delay large capital investments on industrial robotics projects. In the long term, demand from new EV manufacturing lines and from service sectors such as intra-logistics will further fuel the market, resulting in an average growth rate of 5-7% which is much higher than the pre-covid period.
Following a slow 2020 due to the pandemic, the industrial robot market enjoyed substantial growth in 2021, witnessing a year-on-year increase of 34.9%. The market cooled slightly in 2022 but still expanded, registering 11.9% unit shipment and 14.9% revenue growth. The pandemic helped to fuel demand for the robotics industry as companies turn to automation as a way of alleviating labor shortages. Many companies are now investing in industrial automation in order to add stability to their workforce should future crises occur.
In 2022, China accounted for a 39.1% revenue share and 55.4% shipment share of the global industrial robot market. Interact Analysis forecasts that the Chinese market will account for over 60% of industrial robot unit shipments from 2024. The EMEA market for industrial robots was the second largest in the world accounting for 14.8% of total shipments in 2022. The Russia-Ukraine conflict is still a significant threat to Eurozone growth prospects not only because of energy price increases but also because it pushes down business confidence, which could affect employment and investment decisions. The American market for industrial robots was estimated to be worth $2.8Bn in 2022, accounting for 19.8% of global revenues, with 55,268 units shipped.
Maya Xiao, Research Manager at Interact Analysis commented: “Interestingly, in 2022 the average selling price of industrial robots increased for the first time in the last 10 years, as a result of raw material cost, component shortages and supply chain disruptions. Despite this, we forecast that average prices will decrease over the next 5 years.
“The increased demand for industrial robots from the material handling and welding sectors has had, and will continue to have, an impact on average selling prices. As a result of this, demand for heavy-duty models has once again increased, which has altered the payload distribution of the robot market. However, overall, we expect to see a 3% annual decline in prices over the next 5 years.”