According to AMA Research, the Passive Fire market is expected to suffer a downturn in 2020 due to Covid-19 and the accompanying adverse effects upon construction activity, economic outlook and business confidence. For these reasons, the market is forecast to dip by 9% over the course of the year.
Prior to 2020, the market experienced a period of consistent growth, increasing in value terms by 11% between 2015 and 2019. Much of this can be attributed to a positive performance in various sectors of the non-residential construction industry, such as commercial offices, infrastructure and leisure/entertainment.
The market is expected to remain heavily dependent upon trends in construction output, especially for non-residential applications. The present Government’s intention to invest in infrastructure projects via its Getting Building Fund should provide some market impetus in the short term.
In the residential sector, new regulations are being introduced aimed at rectifying problems identified in ‘The Hackitt Report’ which followed the Grenfell Tower disaster. The Fire Safety Bill of March 2020 covers fire safety in residential dwellings and has created new areas of responsibility and accountability. More stringent regulations are also expected to affect the wider industry, as the pressure continues to grow upon manufacturers and specifiers alike to provide safer and more fire-resistant environments.
Michelle Turner, Market Research Analyst at AMA Research, comments “positive performance in key end use sectors pre-2020 helped bring a spurt of growth to the Passive Fire Market. These same end use sectors are now experiencing detrimental effects as a result of COVID-19 and investment has tightened. Supported by the very need of the products found within this market, and driven by further calls for tighter legislation and stricter accountabilities as a result of the Hackitt Review, the Passive Fire Market looks set to remain relatively strong as fire safety remains paramount, helping to keep the boat steady in such adverse conditions.”
Overall, the longer-term scenario for the passive fire protection market remains mixed. Much of this will depend on how well the UK emerges from the various political and economic challenges posed by Covid-19, as well as what form Brexit will eventually take. Growth is projected to return to the market after the downturn experienced in 2020. Between 2021 and 2025, market value is forecast to rise by more than 11%.