Dubai, UAE: Car sales in the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) are set to reach 3.37 million units in 2020 new research has revealed, as rapid urbanisation, increased industrialisation, and growing middle class populations drive demand for easier mobility across the region.
According to global analysts Frost & Sullivan, 2.35 million light vehicles were sold in the MENA region in 2013, with the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) the major contributor to new vehicle sales.
The GCC also commands a 57.8 per cent share of vehicles already in-use in the MENA region says Frost & Sullivan, while the total number of vehicles in-use is expected to reach 33.9 million in 2020, up from the current 21 million.
Meanwhile, the steady 4.6 annual growth rate of new car sales over the next six years will further fuel demand for the regional spare parts market, which is estimated to be worth US$16.8 billion by 2020, up from US$9.5 billion in 2013.
This will come as good news to the more than 1,700 exhibitors at Automechanika Dubai 2015, the Middle East and Africa’s largest trade and networking fair for the automotive aftermarket, taking place from 2-4 June at the Dubai International Convention and Exhibition Centre.
Organised by Messe Frankfurt Middle East, the three-day event targets the burgeoning regional demand for auto parts, accessories, tyres, batteries and auto components by bringing manufacturers and suppliers in touch with influential regional buyers and decision makers.
Since its inaugural edition in 2003, Automechanika Dubai has grown at a compound annual growth rate of 25 per cent in both exhibitor numbers and exhibition space. In 2014, the dedicated showcase featured 1,696 exhibitors from 59 countries, attracting 28,709 trade visitors from 130 countries.
Ahmed Pauwels, CEO of Messe Frankfurt Middle East, said: “One of the key drivers of Automechanika Dubai’s growth is that it presents an unmatched platform for the world’s leading automotive aftermarket suppliers and manufacturers to establish long-lasting business relationships with buyers and distributors from some of the fastest growing markets in the world.
“Crucially it offers indirect access to regional markets such as those in Africa and Iran that offer huge business potential but are hard to reach. Buyers can find out more about new products, find new suppliers and compare product alternatives. The show has truly established itself as an international trade fair of global acclaim.”
Added Pauwels: “The 21 million vehicles already on MENA roads give an indication of the tremendous market potential that exists for global suppliers of auto components, vehicle service and repair, bodywork repair, painting, tyres, batteries and performance systems.”
Now in its 13th edition, Automechanika Dubai 2015 features six core focus areas including the newly formed Parts & Components and Electronics & Systems – the largest section; Accessories & Tuning; Repair & Maintenance; Tyres & Batteries; and Service Station & Car Wash.
Exhibitors already signed on for the show have expressed a sense of optimism that has long pervaded the rapidly-developing Middle East and African automotive aftermarket.
As Peter H. Rehberg, Managing Director of asanetwork - ASA, one of the most important automotive associations in Germany that represents the German Pavilion, said: “Automechanika Dubai has grown remarkably within the last few years as this is one of the few trade shows where people can establish very strong business relationships, particularly in developing markets such as Iraq, Iran, North Africa, and Pakistan.”
Marc Borlinghaus, Automotive Business Development Manager at Arwani Trading Company, one of many companies that has participated at Automechanika Dubai since the first edition, said it’s the networking opportunities and ensuing business that are made after the event that sets it apart.
“Many people make the mistake by judging the success of a trade event by what has been done on-event, and by the number of business deals made during a show,” said Borlinghaus.
“However, the real business is done in the months following an event as a result of the business leads developed during a show. This is where Automechanika Dubai excels. We don’t go there to sell. We go there to meet new leads, develop quotations and contracts following the show, and then sign deals in the ensuing months or even years,”
More than half of the visitors to Automechanika Dubai come from outside of the UAE, including over 2,500 from Africa. The global appeal of the three-day event in 2015 will be reinforced with the presence of 22 country pavilions and 37 international trade associations, while nearly 90 per cent of exhibitors will come from outside of the UAE.
Automechanika Dubai 2015 will also feature the popular Automechanika Academy – a series of seminars and workshops given by leading experts and prominent industry figures. These seminars will focus on key issues that affect the automotive aftermarket.