Freight wagons: Despite weak economic outlook, manufacturers invest in increasing capacities

Karel Novak, Published on 12/12/2022
Freight wagons: Despite weak economic outlook, manufacturers invest in increasing capacities

More freight shifting onto the rail and off the roads – especially in the European market, is currently the guiding principle. To achieve ambitious political goals, there is a need for adequate resources, rolling stock being one of the crucial ones.

However, the production capacity of freight wagon manufacturers in Europe has been a limiting factor for years.

But now, several manufacturers are expanding their capacities and new players are entering the market. The Czech company Walbo, for example, launched the production of intermodal wagons and CargoBeamer, an operator in combined transport will start its freight wagon production in early 2023. In this way, the key preconditions for increasing deliveries of new wagons are created which manufacturers confirm. The industry continues to believe in growth in rail freight transport, despite rapidly rising costs and a gloomy economic outlook.

According to SCI’s MultiClient study "Freight Wagons – Global Market Trends 2022", which analyses the freight wagon market worldwide, the forecast for this and the next year is very favorable. The number of freight wagons delivered in Europe is higher by approximately 2.000 carriages compared to 2021.

With a global volume of more than EUR 25 billion annually, the market for freight wagons plays a central role within the rail industry. Of course, current crises influence this market significantly, but different dynamics can be observed in individual regions. Disrupted supply chains caused by the war in Ukraine posed a challenge, especially in the first half of 2022, and led to rising prices for new freight wagons in Europe. High inflation is aggravating the situation. The Chinese market, however, is still under the strong influence of the Covid-19 crisis and resulting lockdowns. Moreover, Russia, another one of the most important freight wagon markets worldwide is in a downturn.

After record deliveries at the end of the 2010s, an expected slowdown took place, but now the war has caused a sharp drop in freight wagon production. Despite the various challenges, significant growth of the global freight wagon market is expected, strongly influenced by the expected price development.



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