Industry News, Coatings

Polyester Coatings Market to Benefit From Africa’s Construction Boom and Economic Growth

Polyester Coatings Market to Benefit From Africa’s Construction Boom and Economic Growth

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By Shem Oirere, Africa Correspondent

A new analysis of the global polyester coatings market predicts substantial growth in 2014 through to 2015 on the back of increased government and private investment in the building and construction industry.

Market analyst Transparency Market Research (TMR) said in mid-August the anticipated “Increasing investment in infrastructure building is expected to drive the polyester market” for the next six years.

“Governments bodies are investing heavily in improving overall infrastructure of thier own countries. These infrastructure projects include domestic as well as industrial and transportation infrastructure,” said TMR in its analysis of the global polyester coatings market forecast for 2014-2020.

Although it has not been ranked among the top polyester markets in the report, sub-Saharan Africa is one region where increased infrastructure spending will drive economic growth, which could trigger expansion of the polyester coatings market.

Analysts say the region’s economy is expected to grow up to 5.5 percent this year up from 4.9 percent last year.

The International Monetary Fund said in its latest ‘Sub-Saharan Economic Outlook’ that “several countries stand to reap the benefits of investments in transport and telecommunications, an expansion of production capacity (most notably in extractive industries and energy generation), and/or rebounds in agriculture.”

“Economic activity in the region continues to be underpinned by large investments in infrastructure and mining and maturing investments. Current account deficits look to remain elevated, including due to the ongoing high level of infrastructure investment and foreign direct investment related imports.”

According to the Fund, “Investments in infrastructure and mining will continue to add to the domestic demand for goods and services, even if demand related to the public sector slows as several countries move toward fiscal consolidation.”

This anticipated growth in new infrastructure development and hopes of the growth creating increased demand for polyester coatings is in line with the latest analysts’ predictions for the coatings industry in 2014 and 2015.

For example, in Eastern Africa the countries of Kenya, Tanzania, Uganda and Rwanda have announced increased national budgets for new infrastructure projects, and the region is one of those expected to experience growth in demand for the polyester coatings solutions.

Consulting firm Deloitte said: “The East African countries are expected to roll out their ambitious infrastructure development plans in 2014.”

Kenya’s $2 billion Eurobond floated in June in two portions of a five-year $500 million bond and a 10-year $1.5 billion bond, and which the government said was oversubscribed by 400 percent after attracting $8 billion worth of bids, will ensure many of the infrastructure projects either planned or are under construction, are completed.

In Tanzania, Deloitte said the government “continues to push forward with its improvement in infrastructure being a priority discussion in any governmental debate.”

For example, in the 2013/2014 fiscal year, the government allocated $1.2 billion worth of investment on roads, railways and gas pipeline constructions including the gas pipeline from Mtwara to Dar es Salaam has been the most sought after investment as the pressure of stabilizing power generation continues to surge.

Landlocked Uganda has also given priority to infrastructure development “due to the central role it plays.”

“With increased focus on integration within the East African Community, it is expected that a considerable amount of revenue will be allocated to the transport and roads sector as well as the railway in order to facilitate a smooth transition,” said Deloitte.

Spending more on the building and construction industry by African governments is expected to enhance the region’s economy resulting in rising disposable income of the middle class, who together with an anticipated population increase creates a perfect environment for the growth in demand for polyester coatings.

According to TMR: “Owing to rising income in developing countries people are going for second home plans as investment options that is driving the construction industry.”

Some of the leading international coatings manufacturers have expressed interest in taking advantage of the infrastructure construction boom to expand their foothold in the African coatings market.

For example, Munich-based chemical firm Wacker Chemie (WACKER) says it will this year “accelerate its business development in the Africa continent especially in the sub-Saharan region.”

“We have developed tailor-made solutions for polymer-modified tile adhesive formulations taking into account local climatic conditions and materials,” said Cyril Cisinki, managing director Wacker Chemicals Middle East in early July when the company participated in the West Africa Building and Construction Exhibition held in Accra, Ghana.

The chemicals firm concurs with TMR predications that countries across the globe are in the throes of an infrastructure boom and which it hopes to bet on to grow its sales volumes and profits in 2014 through 2015.

“The construction industry is booming. Globally, it is set to grow by over 70 percent to $15 trillion annually by 2025. As the number of construction projects rises, so, too, does the demand for advanced, high-quality construction chemicals – first and foremost dispersible polymer powders as binders for dry-mix mortars,” the company said in its 2014 second-quarter financial report.

The chemical firm, which sold more than 200,000 metric tons of dispersible polymer powders in 2013, says “demand for dispersible polymer powders is growing so fast worldwide that WACKER has been successively increasing capacities at all three of its production sites since last year.”

“Rising volumes, better prices for polysilicon and good coverage of fixed costs through high overall utilization of production facilities all had a positive impact on earnings in the reporting quarter,” the company said. The prospects could not look any better if the TMR predictions come to pass.

In West Africa, WACKER is targeting the market segment for dispersions for water proofing membranes and interior paints, water-repellent resins for masonry coatings and silicone sealants for general and sanitary purposes.

According to Cisinki, WACKER aims “to transform the dry-mix mortar market in Ghana and Western Africa, as we believe that our products can enhance the performance of the local construction chemicals and add great value to the regional construction market, especially in the field of sustainable building techniques.”

According to the African Economic Outlook for 2014, the West Africa region “is expected to continue its rapid economic growth in 2014 and 2015” driven mainly by heavy investments in manufacturing, infrastructure development and in the oil and gas sector.

“After some moderation in 2013, growth is likely to accelerate to above 7 percent in 2014 and 2015,” the outlook predicted.

Meanwhile, the Africa OEM coatings market is also likely to reap from the anticipated economic boom just like the rest of the world according to the TMR report.

TMR said demand for OEM coatings, which include coil coatings, paper and paperboard coatings, powder coatings, radiation cured coatings, wood furniture and composition board finishing, appliances coatings “is rising with changing lifestyle and improving per capita income across the globe. Rising demand from special purpose such as marine coatings, industrial maintenance, aerosol coatings, automotive coatings, wind energy and aerospace coatings, is expected to boost the global polyester coatings market growth.”