Canadian Manufacturing

Industrial valve market continues to grow

The Canadian and US valve market is posting its third year of shipments growth. Water and wastewater are still the biggest markets for valve suppliers.



Washington, DC—For the third year in a row, shipments for the US and Canadian industrial valve market are expected to grow, according to the Valve Manufacturers Association (VMA) in Washington, DC.

The association forecasts shipment value of US$4 billion in 2012—an increase of 2.2 per cent over 2011.

In 2011, automated valves accounted for US$1.2 billion in shipments, followed by ball valves at $718 million, while gate, globe and check valves combined for a total of $577 million.

The VMA says the US and Canadian valve industry saw a decline during the financial crisis, just like other manufacturing sectors, but the market appears to be recovering.

“For our industry, which tends to lag behind the general economy and its own end-user industries, that drop was about five per cent in 2009, as we had predicted. However, shipments have been steadily rising since then,” said William Sandler, VMA’s president.

The top buyer of valves in 2011 was the water and wasterwater industry, accounting for 18 per cent of shipments, according to Valve Manufacturing in the US by IBISWorld, a market research firm in Santa Monica, Calif.

The chemical industry was a close second, accounting for 17 per cent. Petroleum and refining each accounted for about 12 per cent while power generation accounted for 11 per cent.

IBISWorld’s report says with oil prices rising in 2012, demand for valves from petroleum customers will improve. Domestic suppliers may have a tougher time winning business though, given the looming threat of foreign imports.

Valve imports decreased from 2007 to 2012 due to the recession, but many industrial and fluid power valves have become standardized, so manufacturers are mainly competing on price, giving foreign suppliers an edge, according to the report.

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