European Machine Tools Market Data

CECIMO has announced a turnover for 2018 of €27.5 billion, which is 9% higher compared to 2017. This secures a 35% market share in the global machine tool production for European machine tool manufacturers. But slowing global trade and weakening business sentiment are heavy downside risks for the European machine tool manufacturers.

Economic Outlook and Trends

Industrial growth slowed in 2018 driven by global trade stagnation, geopolitical uncertainties and weaker business sentiment. CECIMO expect the industrial activity to slow down further in 2019 and recover some momentum in 2020. This year, they expect the European machine tool market is likely to expand slower than the US and Asia.

CECIMO’s latest estimates for 2018 suggest yet another record machine tool production amounting to €27.5 billion, which is 9% higher than in the previous year. The global output grew at a flat rate of 1% and reached a volume of €79.7 billion in 2018. The production growth was dragged down by China, Brazil, Turkey and Canada posting two-digit negative growth rates.

Clients in Europe registered a 1.8% production growth rate in 2018 and expect a flat growth this year. The global production of the machine tool purchasing industries around the globe posted a growth of approximately 5% in 2018 but is expected to slow down to 2.3% in 2019.

Both European and world machine tool trade has slowed down a gear. Although the main US import tax measures are aimed at China, the European automotive sector is under risk. Industrial activity of other consumer sectors is also slowing. Last year, CECIMO manufacturers exported a volume of €21.7 billion worth of machine tools and registered an export growth of 8.4% – slower than in 2017 (9.5%). Main export destinations outside CECIMO membership were China (25.7%), USA (18.3%), Poland (8.1%), Mexico (4.7%) and Russia (4.6%). In 2018, the world machine tool trade accounted for 44.1 billion, and posted a slower growth rate of 6.9%, after a 9.5% rate in 2017.

Based on internal figures, CECIMO’s machine tool consumption in 2018 is estimated at 18 €billion, 11.8% higher than in 2017. Data from Oxford Economics is suggesting a flat growth rate of 1% and a 4.2% recovery in 2020. The world machine tool consumption grew by 4% in 2018; this year a 2.3% growth is expected accelerating to 3.5% in 2020.

A deceleration of the global trade, geopolitical risks and supply chain disruptions are weighting heavily on the European machine tool manufacturers. “A strong global trade is absolutely necessary to support the industrial activity in Europe and the entire world. That is why, we need to make our best efforts to build a robust trade relationship with the US. A bilateral trade deal on industrial goods would be a great place to start” says Mr Marcus Burton, the Chairman of CECIMO’s Economic Committee.


CECIMO is the European Association of the Machine Tool Industries and related Manufacturing Technologies and brings together 15 national associations of machine tool builders, which represent approximately 1500 industrial enterprises in Europe (EU + EFTA + Turkey), over 80% of which are SMEs. CECIMO covers 98% of the total machine tool production in Europe and about 35% worldwide. It accounts for more than 150,000 employees.

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