17/08/2017 05:44 AST

Manufacturers and suppliers of automated material handling equipment and systems are paying increasing attention to the Middle East and GCC in particular, as the region transforms into a significant market for automated materials handling systems.

With the increase in regional demand for automated systems being driven primarily by industries such as automobiles, food and beverages, chemicals, metals and heavy industries, leading international players are targeting Materials Handling Middle East, as a viable platform to better interact with potential new clients and trade buyers from the region.

According to research by analysts Markets & Markets, the GCC market for automated materials handling equipment, which is estimated to be worth $304.52 million in 2017, is projected to grow at a CAGR of 8.6% to reach $ 498.5 million by 2023. Most of the growth in the region is expected to be in automated guided vehicles, automated storage and retrieval systems, automated cranes, robots and automated conveyer and sorting systems.

Saudi Arabia and the UAE are largest markets for automated materials handling equipment in the GCC region. In 2016, Saudi Arabia accounted for as much as 48% of the AMH equipment market in the GCC, emerging as an attractive destination for logistics and warehousing operations due to increasing investment in infrastructure. In 2014, Saudi Arabia’s government awarded infrastructure projects worth USD 29.34 billion, the highest in GCC region.

These investments are fuelling the demand for providers of logistics, transportation systems, material handling equipment, and supply chain solutions. Further, Saudi is the largest producer and exporter of chemicals in the GCC. The chemicals industry creates demand for automated systems to shorten the lead time, minimize errors, and keep workers safe from harsh environment in the plant.

The UAE accounted for a share of 27% of the AMH equipment market in GCC in 2016. The growth of the market is driven by the adoption of automation, advancements in manufacturing, processes, and improvements in the plant productivity. Further, growing use of material handling equipment in various industries such as food & beverages, metals & heavy machinery, automotive, and aviation is also contributing to the growth of the market.

With Materials Handling Middle East 2017, the region's premier trade and networking event for intralogistics, supply chain and warehousing around the corner, a large number of leading international players are looking to present their automated offerings to regional buyers.

Daifuku, international materials handling giant headquartered in Japan, will be at Materials Handling Middle East 2017, with a view to increasing their regional visibility and to generate brand awareness among the regional market. Andrey Kras, Account Manager at Daifuku’s International Business Division, said: "There is a strong feeling that automation of storage and intralogistics has become an eventual goal for the biggest players on the logistics market. General awareness of the existing technologies has grown significantly compared to 2-3 years ago and many understand that there will be some point of time in the near future, when in order to stay afloat they will need to automate."

Meanwhile, GENAVCO, leading player in the region with a comprehensive lineup of material handling solutions and equipment from a number of leading international brands, intends to continue to make their presence felt as they always do at this year's exhibition.

Director Neeraj Mahajan said: "We consider this as a great opportunity to showcase our Warehouse Storage and Material Handling Solutions to prospective customers within the region. We will display the various ranges of Crown material handling equipment, Stow Racking System and Flexi Narrow Aisle Articulated Equipment. Our experts at the stand will assist the custom

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