PMMI forecasts three years of growth

Improving gross domestic product numbers, rising capacity utilization, and export growth are listed as the primary reasons for packaging machinery sales growth during the next three years by the Packaging Machinery Manufacturers Institute.

In its 9th Annual Shipments and Outlook Study, PMMI forecasts United States shipments of packaging machinery to climb at a cumulative annual rate of 3.9% to $5.358 billion by 2005.

Packaging machinery manufacturers in the U.S. shipped $4.807 billion in packaging and packaging-related converting equipment in 2002, with total shipments increasing by $3 million, or 0.06% compared to 2001. Domestic shipments in ’02 totalled $4.092 billion, a 0.84% increase from 2001. Exports, though, were down 4.2%.

“It’s been widely reported that manufacturers have been in the midst of a slump over the past two years and [this study] confirms 2002’s sluggish economy,” says Charles Yuska, PMMI’s president. A weak economy, geopolitical uncertainties, high excess capacity, industry consolidation, and pricing pressure were all factors contributing to 2002 spending levels, the study reports.

“We are hopeful that the positive economic forecasts for 2003, which indicate gross domestic product growth in the area of 3- to 3.5-percent will boost capital investment,” Yuska says. “The industry’s future does look more promising. A record 18굑 packaging professionals attended Pack Expo Las Vegas, many with projects in hand and ready to spend what they need in order to improve productivity and enhance operational efficiencies.” A copy of the Executive Summary of the report is available at www.pmmi.org. A copy of the entire study is available from PMMI for $2귔 for nonmembers. For details, call Paula Feldman at PMMI, at 703/243-8555.

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