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The global crane market hit a valuation of US$109.5 billion in 2011, having increased at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 0.88% over the past five years.
The key contributor to this marginal growth rate was the decline in yearly growth rate by 18.5% in 2009.
A crane is a type of machine, generally equipped with a hoist, wire ropes or chains, and sheaves, that can be used both to lift and lower materials and to move them horizontally. It is mainly used for lifting heavy things and transporting them to other places.
It uses one or more simple machines to create mechanical advantage and thus move loads beyond the normal capability of a man. Cranes are commonly employed in the transport industry for the loading and unloading of freight, in the construction industry for the movement of materials and in the manufacturing industry for the assembling of heavy equipment.
Asia-Pacific constituted a 44.4% share, making it the largest regional crane market in the world. In the same year, Europe and North America were the second and third-largest regional markets, with 37.7% and 10.1% shares respectively.
The market shares of the European and North American regions are expected to be 32.6% and 8.5% respectively in 2016, a decline from shares in 2011, while the Asia-Pacific region is forecast to increase its share to 50.9% in the same year.
The number of cranes owned by the world's 50 largest crane rental companies (the IC50) has remained almost unchanged over the last four years, despite hostile economic conditions.
Since 2008, numbers have ranged from 21,467 to 22,002 cranes. Prior to that there was a period of steep growth in the global fleet, from a low point of 15,540 units in 2004.
The world's 50 largest crane owning companies had a fleet of 21,896 cranes in 2012, with a total lifting capacity of some 4.98 million tonnes. The fleet is dominated by mobile wheeled cranes, with a split of 78:22, mobiles to crawlers in unit terms.
Although crane numbers have remained flat since 2008, the total lifting capacity of the fleet has continued to climb. At 4.98 million tonnes in 2012, it was 47% higher than 2008 and more than 200% greater than the level seen in 2003.
The global crane market is expected to record a CAGR of 6.54% through to 2016, in anticipation of the growing global construction industry and the improved performance of the global economy following the easing of the economic crisis in Europe.
For more information on the global crane market, see the latest research: Global Crane Market
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