Unmanned Aircraft Poised to Fill Asian Skies
The military unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) market will mushroom over the decade through 2020, according to international consultancy Frost & Sullivan, with its value forecast to grow by 60 per cent to US$7.3 billion.
The Asia-Pacific is expected to lead this surge, propelled by regional force modernisation programmes and supported by sustained economic growth.
China, a relative latecomer to the sector, is expected to lead the expansion with a massive 10-fold growth in spending.
“Asia-Pacific countries clearly understand the advantages offered by UAVs. They have seen the benefits from recent (American) operations and are investing,” said Mahendran Arjunraja, the lead researcher for a new Frost & Sullivan report.
This development has several clear implications. Together with bolstering capabilities, it should lead to greater self-reliance in a segment that is currently dominated by well-established American and Israeli systems. The export trade is also likely to become more competitive.
Arjunraja’s study says the global UAV market was worth $4.55 billion in 2010 and should rise to $7.31 billion in 2020. These figures cover procurement and leasing costs together with ancillary equipment like ground stations. Research and development, operations and sustainment are not included.