Mr. Mohit Loshali, Senior Consultant – Automotive at Fact.MR discusses latest trends shaping Europe’s automotive coatings marketplace
Automotive coatings industry is witnessing a steady growth wherein significant global production as well as consumption is focused in the Asia Pacific excluding Japan (APEJ) region. The region presents good value propositions for automotive coatings thereby has the presence of a number of top manufacturers as well as small and medium-sized players.
Europe is leading the automotive coatings market with the engagement of significant investments in research, development and innovations. In addition, buoyancy in the automotive industry and greater strides towards introducing light-weight automobiles and low temperature curing has led to the development of smart coatings in the automotive coatings market. Uncertainties of Brexit is likely to impact the future progress of the automotive coatings market in Europe.
Post-Brexit, how will the automotive coatings landscape evolve in the UK?
The UK remains the important market for paints, coatings and printing inks in Europe wherein supply chains of these industries are heavily interconnected between the UK and EU. In particular, the coating industry is the highly vulnerable market post-Brexit associated with a huge loss by compromising a considerable foreign direct investment. Major manufacturers in paints, coatings and printing inks industries are members of the British Coatings Federation (BCF) and the European association representing paints and inks (CEPE). Amid consequential uncertainties of Brexit, members of BCF and CEPE have pledged to continue their association post-Brexit. To maintain the attractiveness of the UK market, members are planning to enter a ‘no-deal’ Brexit agreement.
What are the major challenges to be faced by automotive coatings manufacturers in Europe?
Raw materials used in the manufacturing of automotive coatings have to pass through the registration under the European Union’s legislation on safety of chemicals- REACH. As the legislation include stringent screening process, European coating manufacturers are likely to face a shortage in the supply chain as suppliers of raw materials fail to register resins, pigments, additives and other substances under the REACH regulatory standards.
What are the key forecast factors that have greater influence on the European automotive coatings market?
The automotive coatings market in Europe is likely to remain under the influence of multipronged factors, of which few of the key forecast factors are,
- A projected weakening of the big four European economies including the UK, Italy, Germany and France
- The UK’s departure from the European Union post-Brexit
- Forecast of the end-user industry slowdown, especially automobile and construction industries
- Fluctuations in the prices of raw materials
Where is the demand for automotive coatings heavily concentrated in the region?
The automotive and construction industries remain prominent end-users of automotive coatings. Growth of these industries directly correlates to the consumption level of automotive coatings. EU 4, the big fours in Europe including Germany, France, Italy and the UK has mature market of these industries in Europe. Despite the projected decline in the economic conditions of these countries, EU4 continues to reap a considerable volume consumption of automotive coatings in entire Europe.
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