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The global utility poles market size was valued at USD 31.48 billion in 2021. The market is projected to grow from USD 32.90 billion in 2022 to USD 49.98 billion by 2029, exhibiting a CAGR of 6.2% during the forecast period. The global COVID-19 pandemic has been unprecedented and staggering, with the utility poles experiencing lower-than-anticipated demand across all regions compared to pre-pandemic levels. Based on our analysis, the global utility poles market exhibited a decline of -7.7% in 2020 as compared to 2019.
Utility poles are column-like structures that support public utility and services setups such as power lines, wires and cables. These poles are used for supporting telecommunication wires, transmission cables, distribution cables, and hydro poles. They can be utilized for several applications. Based on needs and the available resources, the size of these poles and the material used to make them vary. The utility pole is around 12 meters in height (depending on the terrain) and spaced anywhere from 38 – 91 meters apart.
Pandemic Delayed Projects which Temporarily Impacted the Market Growth
The abrupt rise in COVID-19 has negatively affected different sectors and countries. Various nations across the globe have observed investment-related problems owing to the halt in industrial activities. Additionally, several small and medium organizations have also been significantly impacted by the pandemic, resulting in problems such as the unavailability of a skilled workforce and cash flows.
However, several governments have announced economic aid for many industries, allowing various organizations to tolerate the revenue gap. Besides, the companies have also focused on serving important industries to uphold operational performance.
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Increasing Development of Composite Materials in the Poles Market to Augment Growth
The emergence of composite material is growing rapidly across the globe and the poles made from composite material exhibit superior properties, which further boost the installation of such poles. This material is also cost-effective and highly profitable to use in the utility industry. These types of poles are also lightweight and reliable over the rest. Over the last 10 years, communication and electric utility companies widely utilize composite poles. Also, these poles solve many problems afflicting wood, steel, and concrete poles.
Composite poles replace wood poles; one reason for this is their life; on average, wood poles are expected to last for around 40 years. Though, there are some installations where a wood pole will last only a fraction of that time before it needs to be replaced. In North America, woodpeckers and pests are responsible for millions of dollars in damage to wood poles yearly. In some instances, a wood pole can be physically weak to support its primary design load only two or three days after its installation if woodpeckers aggressively target it. Any wildlife cannot damage composite poles, and replacing the wooden poles with a composite pole can eliminate the need to replace the poles for approximately 80 years, which is the average service life of some composite poles.
Thus, the installation of composite poles is highly increasing over others. Also, composite poles can flex and better withstand loads such as a tree falling on a line. The above factors create a lucrative opportunity for composite poles across the globe.
Rapidly Rising Telecommunication Industry to Boost the Installation of Utility Poles
The telecom industry is booming worldwide with the launch of 4G. Now, the industry is flourishing as several companies have announced the launch of 5G in several developed and developing countries. The upcoming projects require establishing proper infrastructure so the technology can reach each section of the country. This increases the demand for utility poles widely used for telecommunication across the regions. The rising penetration of electronic gadgets and technological advancement further boosts the telecommunication industry, which ultimately drives the utility poles market growth.
This industry is generating larger revenues and generating employment for several countries. For instance, China Mobile Limited is one the world’s largest telecommunications employers, with a workforce of around 456,239 people. Verizon provides around 135,000 jobs while Vodafone employs approximately 92,005 people.
Growing Energy Demand Worldwide Supporting the Installation of Utility Poles
The energy demand is constantly growing across the globe. Electricity providers are constantly expanding their electricity generation capabilities. This increases the demand for electricity transmission and distribution, ultimately increasing the demand for utility pole installation.
Developing countries are extensively trying to distribute energy in rural areas and are increasing the installation of utility poles for smooth transmission and distribution of electricity. The energy demand continues to increase across various developing countries such as Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa, which has led to increases in energy generation and distribution projects.
Utility poles are highly in demand due to increasing television and telephone use across developing and developed nations. The penetration of electronic gadgets is also widely increasing.
Growing Inclination toward Underground Connection Hindering the Market
The global transmission, distribution, and communication sector is transforming, and underground cable laying adoption is rapidly increasing. Earlier, underground cables were used where the overhead lines could be dangerous or difficult. However, several developed and developing nations such as Germany, China, India, and others are rapidly switching toward underground connections. This is due to various advantages of underground connections, such as increased reliability for the transmission grid, limited space of new and existing substations with no possibility to expand, the necessary right of way for the transmission corridor, and disturbance in weather also cannot harm such connections.
Although, the maintenance cost of underground cables is higher than that of overhead cables. Despite this fact, countries are adopting the underground connection due to the benefits offered by such connections.
Increasing Adoption in Energy Distribution and Transmission Applications to Propel Growth of the Between 40ft – 70ft Segment
Based on type, the market is segmented into below 40ft, between 40ft-70ft, and above 70ft. The between 40ft – 70ft segment is estimated to dominate the market during the forecast period. This is the average height of the poles and is highly suitable for any climate conditions. The standard utility pole in the U.S. is approximately 40ft long and is buried 6ft in the ground. However, the pole sizes vary as per the area and requirement. They are typically spaced 125ft apart in urban and 300ft in rural areas, but distance can vary widely due to terrain.
The above 70ft poles market is expected to grow significantly during the forecast period. The installation of such poles is rapidly increasing in the areas where high-altitude poles are needed. The demand for such poles has been high in the past few years.
Wood Segment Dominated in 2021 Owing to Ease of Availability and Low Cost
The market has been segmented into steel, composite, concrete, and wood. The wood segment dominated the market in 2021. However, the replacement work for such poles is widely increasing owing to several decaying issues of wood over time.
The composite material segment is likely to witness growth at a rapid pace during the forecast period. The use of composite material is increasing for the construction of these types of poles as the material offers various benefits such as high strength, lightweight, and cost efficiency. Also, this material is safe from the attack of woodpeckers, unlike wood.
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Distribution Line Segment to have Highest CAGR due to its Rising Demand
The market has been segmented into distribution line, transmission line, telecommunication line, and others. The distribution line segment is expected to register the highest CAGR during the forecast period. The rising demand and consumption of energy globally increase the demand for distribution poles. Thus, it drives growth of the segment during the forecast period.
The telecommunication line segment is estimated to register growth at a rapid pace during the forecast period. The installation of telephone lines is increasing worldwide owing to rising distance communication and penetration of internet services. The rising adoption of smartphones, laptops, and other gadgets is also a growth-driving factor for the segment.
Asia Pacific Utility Poles Market Size, 2021 (USD Billion)
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Geographically, the global market has been analyzed across five main regions, North America, Europe, Asia Pacific, Latin America, and the Middle East & Africa.
The Asia Pacific region is likely to witness growth at the highest rate during the forecast period owing to the rising installation of such poles across the urban and rural areas of the region. The demand for electricity is rising with each passing day. The governments in several developing countries such as India, Vietnam, China, Indonesia, Malaysia, and others are working extensively to provide continuous electricity in rural as well as disaster-prone areas due to which the installation of such poles is increasing.
China is the second economy in the world with a steady growth rate. The electricity demand is also among the world's highest, growing on average by 2.5-3% annually. The installed generation capacity is 1,505 GW, and the peak load exceeds 650 GW. This results in increasing demand for utility poles along with transmission lines.
North America is an established market. However, the region is undergoing upgrades and refurbishment work across several areas. The U.S. government has planned to replace wooden poles with composite or steel material. According to the Department of Energy (DoE), there are about 175-180 million utility poles in total in the country.
Europe is estimated to grow at a significant pace during the forecast period. The rising demand for constant electricity across the region increases the demand for smooth transmission of distribution, due to which proper infrastructure, including utility poles, is required. The installation of renewable energy and the transition from a conventional source of electricity to a renewable source further increases the demand.
The Middle East & Africa region is estimated to register growth in the coming years. The region contains rural areas where infrastructure development is in progress. Also, the work providing electricity in such areas is going on at a rapid pace which further boosts the installation in the region.
The Latin America region is also estimated to grow significantly in the coming years owing to rising investment in infrastructure development. The government is working to provide smooth networks and electricity to its citizens. Furthermore, upgrades and replacement work are also going on within the country. This boosts the growth of the market in the Latin America region.
Key Market Players Concentrating on Adopting Advanced Materials at Low Cost of Operation and Installation
Various utility poles industry players operate with local, regional, and international footholds across the market. Different companies emphasize producing products with higher strength density, lower weight, and high efficiency to enhance their global position. Additionally, numerous participants are manufacturing the tubular pole structure at the regional or local level. The market players are introducing poles in different materials and sizes for different areas and requirements.
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The research report provides a detailed regional analysis of the market and focuses on key aspects such as competitive landscape, types, and applications of the system. Besides this, the report offers insights into the utility poles market trends and highlights key industry developments. In addition to the factors mentioned above, the report encompasses several factors that have contributed to the market growth in recent years.
Value (USD Billion)
By Pole Size, Material, Application, and Region
By Pole Size
Fortune Business Insights says that the global market size was USD 31.48 billion in 2021 and is projected to reach USD 49.98 billion by 2029
In 2021, the market value stood at USD 31.48 billion.
Growing at a CAGR of 6.2%, the market will exhibit healthy growth in the forecast period (2022-2029).
By application, the distribution line segment is the leading segment in the market
Growing energy demand is likely to boost the installation of the market.
El Sewedy Electric Company, Valmont Industries Inc., Skipper Ltd., Nippon Concrete Industries Co., Ltd., Hill & Smith Holdings Plc, and Stella-Jones Inc. are the leading players.
Asia Pacific dominated the market in 2021.
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