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Rolling stock manufacturers are optimistic about the future, and the merger of Alstom and Bombardier Transportation could create a European heavyweight able to compete with China’s CRRC, according to the latest Worldwide Rolling Stock Manufacturers market study from SCI Verkehr.
Rolling stock manufacturers generated total sales of €52·8bn in 2020, the German consultancy estimates, down from the previous year’s level of €58·4bn. The first half of 2020 saw plant closures, short-time working and supply chain delays as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, but some manufacturers were able to make up for production backlogs in the second half.
India’s Integral Coach Factory entered the top 10 for the first time
The top 10 manufacturers accounted for 72% of sales, with minor changes in the ranking: Siemens Mobility (fourth) and Transmashholding (fifth) swapped places, while CAF and India’s Integral Coach Factory entered the top 10 for the first time, displacing Wabtec and US wagon builder Trinity Rail.
Alstom and Bombardier Transportation are included in the ranking both individually and merged; SCI Verkehr notes that regulatory commitments related to the merger including the sale of the Alstom plant at Reichshoffen in France and parts of the Bombardier Transportation plant at Hennigsdorf in Germany have not yet been met.
CRRC remains ‘by far’ the world market leader in segments such as high speed or metro trains.
The merger has created a new European heavyweight in the global market. Bombardier Transportation was a leader in the market for electric multiple-units and light rail vehicles, and Alstom could now gain a significant lead over the competition, SCI Verkehr suggests. Meanwhile, CRRC remains ‘by far’ the world market leader in segments such as high speed or metro trains.
Digitalisation and sustainability offer manufacturers new areas for growth and innovation, including co-operation with operators or start-ups. SCI Verkehr reports that major companies are now focusing on applications including digital maintenance, mobility-as-a-service and condition monitoring.
Alstom monorail cars for Egypt
There are also opportunities to expand into new markets and localise production in co-operation with domestic manufacturers. SCI Verkehr notes that countries including Turkey and Egypt are supporting local production to strengthen their economy and reduce their dependency on global manufacturers.
This article first appeared on www.railwaygazette.com
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