Railway Passenger Transport Industry Market Research & Statistics

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Global Railway Passenger Transport Industry


The world railway passenger transport industry recorded more than 6% expansion in 2010, bringing the industry to a value of over $169 billion. MarketLine predicts the industry will grow 24% in the five-year period ending 2015 to reach almost $210 billion.


In terms of volume, the global railway passenger transport industry grew more than 4% in 2010 to reach almost 2.8 trillion PKm. The industry is expected to reach a volume in excess of 3.3 trillion PKm in 2015, representing 19% growth in five years. The industry encompasses the various modes of heavy rail passenger transport services, including regional, suburban, inter-city and international trains.


Globally, the EU holds more than 43% of the global railway passenger transport industry.


The global railway industry is heavy on capital as investments have to be made on a regular basis to replace or update rolling stock, reports Global Industry Analysts. Outdated fleets need to be replaced to better cater for passenger comfort and increasing numbers of passengers. Signaling equipment must also be brought up-to-date to boost network capacity and enhance rail travel safety.


Growth in the world rail supply market is fuelled by the need to service and renew infrastructure and signaling equipment. Other factors driving the global passenger railcar market include economic growth, increased awareness regarding environmental issues, and the need to cut down on road traffic.


Regional Market Share


  • The EU dominates the global passenger railcar market, with Asia-Pacific in second place, according to Global Industry Analysts. Asia boasts the highest passenger-kilometer and is an emerging economy. Asian nations are set to climb in the global passenger railway industry. High-speed trains in Korea, Japan and China along with Indian metro trains will drive the Asian passenger rail market. China is forecast to become the market leader for high-speed trains before 2015. North America’s passenger rail market will witness a slower growth rate as passengers still opt for the car as a favored mode of transport.


  • Chinese passenger rail transport industry players fall into three divisions, namely state-owned, local and co-investment railways, reports IBIS World. The latter involves state and business investment. Railway terminal operations, along with that of urban rail transit services and station facilities fall outside of the remit of this passenger rail transport industry.


  • In 2010, the Chinese passenger rail transport industry reached railway mileage of 91,000km, representing a near 5,000km increase year-on-year, according to research from Research in China. The close of 2010 saw a dozen cities, including Shanghai and Beijing, put urban light rails and subway systems in place with a combined number of 48 lines and mileage of almost 1,400 km.


  • The US passenger rail sector generated more than $19 billion in 2010, having recorded yearly growth of 5% for the four preceding years, reports MarketLine. In terms of market consumption, volumes grew at 3% annually over the same period, to exceed 58,000 million PKm. Market growth is expected to slow to just over 4% a year between 2010 and 2015, bringing the market to just over $34.5 trillion.


  • In EU, the passenger rail industry was worth over $73 billion in 2010. MarketLine reports there was 5% yearly growth in the sector between 2006 and 2010. Market consumption exceeded 600,000 million PKm in 2010. Market growth for the five-year period ending 2015 is forecast to reach almost 5% yearly. The market has a forecast worth of almost $92,000 million for 2015.


  • The passenger rail market in the Asia-Pacific region generated over $69 billion in 2010 after 3% annual growth for four years, reports MarketLine. Growth in market consumption volumes was close to 7% from 2006 to 2010, exceeding 2 trillion PKm in 2010. Market growth is expected to accelerate to an annual rate of almost 3.5% between 2010 and 2015, bringing the market to a value of more than $81 billion.



Market Outlook


The global railways sector is set to continue recording growth due to rising population, economic growth, an increasing level of urbanization, environmental concerns, the need to cut down road traffic and transportation sector needs. Global Industry Analysts underlines the advantages the sector offers, such as greater energy efficiency, than alternative transportation by road, water and air. This makes the industry ideally positioned to cater to demand for green transport solutions.



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Topics under Railway Passenger Transport

Parent industry:  Passenger Transportation

Related industries: Airline, Road Passenger Transport, Maritime Passenger Transport

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