22 Jul 2024


Manufacturing recovery will vary by sector and region

The time that it will take various sectors to recover to 2019 levels as predicted by Interact's Manufacturing Industry Output (MIO) tracker

A new analysis of how long it will take for global manufacturing to recover from the effects of the Covid-19 pandemic, suggests that there will be big variations in recovery rates in different sectors of industry and in different regional markets. The study, by Interact Analysis, shows, for example, that the commercial vehicle market and the electrical and electronic equipment sector will both recover much faster than previously thought, while other sectors will suffer longer-term effects.

The research, which covers 35 industries and machinery sectors and 38 regional markets, predicts that most countries will surpass their 2019 levels of production by 2024, adding that China’s rapid return to normality is unlikely to be replicated in other countries for cultural reasons. The US is likely to recover faster than most other regions, while Brazil, India and the UK will be among the slowest to recover.

The reason for the strong predicted recovery for commercial vehicles is that it is less dependent on consumer spending than other sectors. It is expected to recover much faster than the automotive industry as a whole.

While parts of the electrical and electronic equipment sector are down – such those selling mainly to automotive manufacturers – the demand for consumer entertainment electronics is “well up”. Industries such as aerospace are suffering, but other, perhaps less obvious sectors, such as textile machinery manufacturing, will also be hit badly, according to Interact.

The main reason for the slow recovery rates expected in Brazil and India is the high degree of infection growth in those countries and the relative absence of financial stimuli. The US is expected to recover well despite its high level of infections due to the large financial stimulus packages being applied.

In China, a particularly fast return to normality – with its 2020 manufacturing output coming the closest to 2019 levels – is underway because it has taken strong measures to combat the virus. These measures, such as apps that track the movement of every individual, are unlikely to be politically acceptable in many other countries, so China’s fast recovery is unlikely to be replicated elsewhere, Interact suggests.