Global tire sales to grow 4.3% per year

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CLEVELAND (Jan. 17, 2014) — Led by growth from Asia, in particular China and India, demand for tires worldwide should increase 4.3 percent annually through 2017 to 2.9 billion units, according to market researchers Freedonia Group Inc.

Seen in value terms, the study, "World Tires," expects the world market to grow nearly 8 percent annually, reaching $276 billion by 2017.

Freedonia analyst Elliott Woo forecasts Asia/Pacific will be responsible for the bulk of global tire demand gains, accounting for two-thirds of growth through 2017.

Freedonia sees China, which accounted for 22 percent of world demand in 2012, continuing to grow, albeit not at the pace it expanded in 2007-12 and as expansion of both motor vehicle production and vehicle usage will decelerate.

The Cleveland-based market research firm expects India to post strong growth in the coming five years, surpassing Japan as the world's third largest market. Sales in Japan are forecast to decline through 2017, a function of a shrinking population and falling motor vehicle exports.

Freedonia sees demand for tires in the developed countries of Western Europe and North America to keep growing, but gains in these regions will continue to trail the global average, averaging less than 2 percent growth annually.

Freedonia sees stronger economic environments supporting growth in new vehicle production and vehicle usage, but slow growth in population and the motor vehicle stock will constrain gains.

The US will continue to be the world's second largest national consumer of tires, accounting for 13 percent of global demand in 2017, the research firm said.

World Tires is available for $6,100 from Freedonia Group Inc. Information may also be obtained through www.freedoniagroup.com.

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