THE global water and wastewater network market is growing steadily due to increasing connectivity and rehabilitation needs. With rising urbanisation and a large quantum of capital investment needed to implement projects, market participants are rolling out innovative solutions and are depending on new financing methods to develop the existing network infrastructure.
New analysis from Frost & Sullivan, CEO 360 Degree Perspective on Global Water and Wastewater Networks, finds that the market earned revenues of $89.86 billion in 2014 and estimates this to reach $156.04 billion in 2020. The study covers the segments of analytics and software, automation and ICT, meters, pumps, pipes and allied pipe network services, and design and engineering services.
Currently, less than 60 percent of the world has pipe water connectivity and about 65 percent has access to proper sanitation. A cumulative investment of $0.75 trillion is expected to be made by 2020 to establish and maintain water and wastewater networks, taking access to pipe water and improved sanitation figures up to 70 and 75 percent respectively.
“Most challenges facing utilities such as the lack of financing infrastructure, non-revenue water losses, and pipe blockages have their root cause in ageing infrastructure,” explained Frost & Sullivan Energy & Environmental Research Analyst R Ramkumar. “With more than half of the world’s networks nearing the end of [their] useful life, systematic replacement and rehabilitation activities will account for the bulk of opportunities in the market.”
Strong revenue potential exists for market participants. Both developed and developing regions will be lucrative markets, with the former likely to move towards smart systems while the latter leapfrogs to smart networks.
Smart systems, automation and control, and trenchless technologies will address the requirements of a large segment of the global market and outpace the growth of other network components. Therefore, water and wastewater network infrastructure providers should focus on providing these products at an affordable price.
“These market trends, along with the need for value-added services and integrated water management solutions, will drive market participants to acquire cross-functional capabilities and capitalise on industry convergence,” noted Ramkumar. “Many market participants will continue to turn to acquisitions to better equip themselves to meet customer expectations.”.