Global RO system components for water treatment to cross $3 billion by 2010

A soon-to-be-released updated report, Major Reverse Osmosis System Components for Water Treatment: The Global Market, from Business Communications Company Inc., projects the global market for RO membranes and system components will grow from current estimates of $1.9 billion by an average annual growth rate of 10.3% to more than $3 billion in 2010. Through 2010, current and future users are projected to add more than 2.5 billion gallons per day of RO capacity...

NORWALK, CT, June 14, 2005 -- Water treatment has become an area of global concern as individuals, communities, industries, nations, and their national institutions strive for ways to keep this essential resource available and suitable for use. The water treatment market remains a fragmented, but highly competitive, industrial sector. This is due, in part, to the number of competing technologies, both advanced and traditional, as well as the many components that may be needed to make up any one system. Reverse osmosis (RO) systems have, over the past 25 years, emerged as an effective solution to transform saline, brackish, and contaminated water into a useable and/or potable product. The RO technology sector still has areas of promising activity and a market for replacement and upgraded equipment.

According to a soon-to-be-released updated report, Major Reverse Osmosis System Components for Water Treatment: The Global Market (RGB-255R), from Business Communications Company Inc., the global market for RO membranes and system components is currently estimated at $1.9 billion and is expected to rise at an average annual growth rate (AAGR) of 10.3% to more than $3 billion in 2010. Through 2010, current and future users are projected to add more than 2.5 billion gallons per day of RO capacity.

The United States leads the world in expenditures for RO equipment, $848 million in 2005; and will continue to be the largest purchaser during the forecast period, investing an estimated $1.4 billion by 2010, primarily for use in municipal water desalination, and process water treatment for the power generation, semiconductor manufacture and pharmaceutical industries.

Outside the United States, the value of RO varies from region to region, although the industrial sector generally benefits most from installing capacity. With an estimated market size of $433 million, the Asia Pacific region currently ranks second in the RO market. Japan has consistently followed the United States in global purchases of RO equipment. China and India with their rapid industrialization and vigorous GDP growth will see the highest market share increases as they outstrip other nations in adopting the technology. Plans to build new Asian semiconductor plants will boost sales in traditionally large markets such as South Korea and Taiwan.

In Europe, the region's largest user, Spain, will continue purchasing RO equipment as it expands existing water treatment capacity and builds new desalination plants along the coast. Eastern European nations also are expected to make major RO purchases as they work to comply with EU water standards. Germany and the United Kingdom, large existing markets, will continue to make purchases for industrial and some municipal uses. The city of London is looking into the possibility of building the U.K.'s first desalination plant.

In 2005, the Middle East/Africa region will spend an estimated $170 million on RO equipment. In the arid Middle East, desalinating water is essential to meeting the needs of its affluent population and water intensive industries, especially oil and power. Relative to thermal desalination methods used widely in the Middle East, the energy costs of have RO have dropped, increasing RO market share in regions not formerly served by the membrane process.

The $132 million Latin American/Caribbean RO market currently is based on the tourist trade for Caribbean users and on tourism and industry for Latin American users. In the next five years, the Antilles, Antigua, the Bahamas, Caymans and Bermuda will add to their existing RO capacity for resort and other tourist needs. Mexico and Chile, currently the largest Latin American RO users, have plans to add 5.2mgd and 13.7mgd, respectively, during the five year forecast period. Chile will desalinate seawater for its copper mining industry, while Mexico will use RO for industrial and municipal water desalination.

The reduced cost of RO has made the process more competitive with other water supply options. Factors contributing to price decreases include greater competition among equipment suppliers, improved productivity and the falling costs of membrane modules, improved energy recovery devices that cut plant energy requirements, and the global trend toward privatizing water projects.

Business Communications Company Inc. (www.bccresearch.com) is based in Norwalk, Conn. Since 1971, BCC Inc. has critically studied the major market, economic and technological developments that characterize various industries to produce reports, newsletters and conferences. In the process, it has focused on advanced materials, high-technology systems and components, and novel processing methods since the development and marketing of these phenomena assert a profound influence on manufacturers and users on a global scale. The above-mentioned study can be found under report number RGB-255R. It's scheduled for release in July.

In related news, see:
-- "Study: U.S. membrane market to reach $6.9 billion by 2009"
-- " Market for biosensors and other bioelectronics to reach $8.2B by 2009"

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