SINGAPORE, July 6 The global financial crisis, as expected, has taken its toll on the Asia-Pacific economies and the spillovers from the crisis have impacted the region with unexpected speed and force. Major economies in Asia such as Japan, China, South Korea, India, and Southeast Asia countries have taken a hit due to the severe macroeconomic conditions.
According to Frost & Sullivan's Asia Pacific Research Analyst of Measurement & Instrumentation Practice Sriram Venkatasubramanian, demand for advanced manufacturing has slumped and according to a recent IMF report, Japanese auto exports have fallen by nearly 70 percent between September 2008 and March 2009. This is because of the fact that much of Asia relies heavily on the U.S. and Europe for exporting its sophisticated products for which demand has collapsed.
"A sensor, typically, is one of the most ubiquitous components that are employed in different manufacturing industries. Due to the impact of the financial crisis, the Asian sensors industry has been experiencing a slump and has witnessed significant fall in unit shipments of many product types," he said.
He continued, "Initially, at the beginning of 2009, industry participants hinted that the first half will be characterized by lower growth rates and recovery would be in sight towards the second half. But, the road to recovery will take much longer due to the intensity of the crisis and the stimulus packages announced by various governments will only start showing positive trends in the second half of this year."
According to Sriram, major end-user segments such as automotive and consumer electronics have witnessed negative growth in the past three quarters. "For instance, in Japan, in the first half of 2009, the consumer electronics shipments dived 14 percent year-on-year. The country's video game market shrank for the first time in four years in 2008," he said.
He continued, "Overall, the APAC sensors market is expected to have generated revenues of $7.3 billion in the first half of 2009, down 8.5 percent as compared with 11.9 percent during the same period in 2008. The market is likely to generate revenues of $16.2 billion in 2009 at a CAGR of 9.6 percent over the previous year."
In terms of industry specifics, the Southeast Asia MEMS sensors market generated revenues of $57.5 million in 2008 and is expected to generate about $62.1 million in 2009 at a CAGR of 8 percent over the previous year. The automotive and consumer segments contributed 69.6 percent of the overall revenues for the MEMS market in SEA.
"Automotive electronics, until recently, was the biggest revenue generator for MEMS sensors industry but as a result of the subdued growth of the automotive sector, the revenues are likely to fall 30 percent in 2009," said Sriram.
He forsees, "In the second half of 2009, the MEMS sensors market is likely to be driven by high growth in the consumer electronics sector. Consumer electronics products such as cell phones, laptops, game consoles, digital still cameras, MP3 players, and white goods are likely to witness high growth towards the end of 2009 and through 2010 in emerging markets across Asia. This will lead to a positive outlook for MEMS sensors for the second half. Overall, despite MEMS sensors recording a steep fall in 2009, the MEMS sensors market will be one of the fastest growing segments through 2010 until 2011 and will be the first segment to emerge out of recession."
Looking beyond 2009 and in years ahead, energy harvesting will be one of the hot spots for many sensors makers. Emerging wireless technology coupled with portable sensors products renders energy harvesting as one the most attractive growth drivers for the sensors industry.
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