The recovery of the mining industry following industrialization in emerging economies and investments in mining to support the demand for metals and commodities have brightened prospects in personal protective equipment (PPE) globally. Multinational mining companies bring with them a strong safety culture, which trickles down to the small companies and service contractors, in turn, enhancing the uptake of PPE in developing nations.

 Additionally, regulatory authorities such as the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) have publicized several fatal and non-fatal accidents in mines further affirming the importance of safety and PPE usage.

 New analysis from Frost & Sullivan, Analysis of the Global Mining Industry PPE Market, finds that the market earned revenue of more than $2.26 billion in 2013 and estimates this to reach $2.78 billion in 2018. Product segments covered in this study are above-the-neck and respiratory protection, protective gloves, workwear, protective footwear, fall protection and gas detectors.

The mining industry is likely to remain an important end-user sector for the PPE market globally due to its high level of occupational hazards. However, developing countries currently lack proper regulatory enforcement. For instance, most Southern African countries have no specific PPE legislation for the workplace, and implementation of existing laws is neither strict nor continuous.

 Additionally, environmental concerns related to greenhouse gas emissions have caused countries in the U.S. and parts of Europe to increase use of green energy sources and biofuels. Government subsidies for green energy adoption have constricted coal mining budgets, in turn hampering PPE demand.

China’s large shadow

“As developed markets are relatively mature for mining PPE, growth is expected to be driven by the emerging economies of China, India, CEE, Africa and Latin America,” said Frost & Sullivan Chemicals, Materials & Food Senior Research Analyst Aparna Balasubramanian. “China accounts for approximately 50 percent of global mining employment, which makes it a significant market for mining PPE.”

 The market situation is expected to change with increasing safety awareness among employers. This translates to higher need for training and therefore, manufacturers will have to develop competence in this area.

 Participants can gain an advantage by establishing broad distribution networks. They can set themselves apart and optimally tap market opportunities through price competitiveness, timely product delivery to remote mine sites, as well as by offering technical assistance and superior customer service.

 “Cost optimization, product adaptation to regional market needs, and lean manufacturing are essential for global companies to gain penetration in fast-growing emerging markets,” noted Balasubramanian. “Multi-product offerings and close customer interactions are the other key competitive factors that could entrench them in the market.”

 Analysis of the Global Mining Industry PPE Market is part of the Materials (http://www.chemicals.frost.com) Growth Partnership Service program. Frost & Sullivan’s related studies include: Strategic Analysis of the Western European Above-the-neck PPE Market, Strategic Analysis of the North American Above-the-neck Personal Protective Equipment Market, Analysis of the Western European Protective Footwear Market, among others. All studies included in subscriptions provide detailed market opportunities and industry trends evaluated following extensive interviews with market participants.