Every Region Is A Winner And A Loser In The Flow And Treatment Export Battle
Suppliers of flow control and treatment products including those dealing with air, gases, water and other liquids are generating annual revenues of over $300B. Each region of the world is participating both in the manufacture and consumption of these products. In Air/Gas/Water/Fluid Treatment and Control: World Market, McIlvaine Company analyzes the production, imports and exports in each region and country.
China is now a major exporter of filter bags and filter media. Much of the finished bag export is by local companies. However, the export of filter media as roll goods is from Chinese factories owned by the big international media companies such as Ahlstrom, Lydall, Hollingsworth & Vose, BWF and Andrew.
Europe is a major net exporter of sophisticated decanter and disc type centrifuges used in municipal wastewater treatment as well as chemical and food and beverage applications. Europe enjoys a lead in the export of industrial and municipal pumps, although it should be noted that Flygt is part of the U.S. based Xylem.
In terms of air pollution control systems for power plants, the Chinese dominate the market but not the exports. The reason is the huge size of the domestic market. It is anticipated that the Chinese air pollution companies will play a significant role in Southeast Asia. This market is very international. Alstom which is headquartered in France conducts its air pollution control business from the U.S. Hitachi and Mitsubishi have large operations in Europe and the U.S. as well as in Japan.
The U.S. continues to enjoy the export lead in the valve segment. The top three companies Pentair, Flowserve and Emerson are U.S. based and have ten percent of the global market. Chinese companies are starting to play a bigger role. Neway now has a major presence in Europe.
The U.S. also holds a slight edge over Europe in terms of exports of air and water instrumentation. However, Thermo Fisher recently set up its main air pollution research center in China. This initiative by Thermo Fisher lends credence to the belief that the whole emphasis on national exports and imports is outdated. International companies rather than national governments are proving to be more influential in creating jobs and wealth than are any of the individual countries in which they operate.
An example of this increasing importance of international companies is the acquisition of Howden (UK) by Colfax. This U.S. company now operates the world s largest fan manufacturing facilities.