Since the summer of 2013, economic uncertainty has given way to more stable development in Europe. The economies in the eurozone are estimated to take an upward turn in 2014. Growth is expected particularly in the second half of the year.
Market-specific differences in construction and the demand for rental services are still considerable in Europe. In its November forecast, the construction market analyst Euroconstruct estimated that construction would decline in Finland, Sweden, Poland, Estonia, the Czech Republic and Slovakia in 2013. Construction is estimated to have increased in Norway, Denmark, Latvia and Lithuania as well as slightly in Germany. In 2014, construction is expected to increase in the Nordic countries, Germany, Poland and Lithuania. Construction and the economic development in Norway did not meet expectations in the fourth quarter of 2013, which is likely to weaken the outlook for construction in 2014.
In the long term, the equipment rental market is expected to grow faster than the construction market. Changes in demand usually follow those in construction with a delay and may be strong. In addition to construction, the demand for equipment rental services is affected by industrial investments and the rental penetration rate. The need to improve profitability in construction and the increasingly strict environmental and health requirements related to construction are some of the factors which make rental services more attractive.
The European Rental Association (ERA) is expecting equipment rental to increase in all of Cramo’s main market areas in 2014.