The extent to which each member state's waste management market has been affected by the economic downturn varies. Germany, France and the UK were impacted first and more significantly than their Southern European counterparts. Key players in the market such as Veolia Environmental Services have described the situation as increasingly grim with a decline in waste volumes collected and treated since the last quarter of 2008 and a significant drop in the recycling business.
Although the economic crisis affects the entire waste management market, the recycling sector suffered the most. This is a direct result of the sharp fall in prices of recyclables such as steel and paper, resulting in large volumes of waste remaining unattended. This has been an expensive proposition for waste management companies and there is widespread concern in the market that this will result in the price of recycling spiralling upwards, thus making it an economically unattractive proposition. Such a scenario is already present in the UK with the prices of collecting paper rising by £20 more per ton.
While the economic crisis faces an uncertain future, experts warn that volumes of waste awaiting recycling in warehouses is expected to rise at least until the end of the first quarter of 2009. In addition, the crisis has assumed global proportions and linkages more than even before. For example, waste management firms were typically expected to sell waste paper and cardboard to paper mills that reuse these recyclables to make paper, envelopes and newsprint, but this market has declined significantly due to a sharp fall in demand from key export markets such as China.
Despite this difficult situation, new opportunities are arising for waste management companies and suppliers. "Governments across Europe have already responded to this slowdown by increasing spending to infuse money into the economy and as a result, there are a growing number of infrastructure projects in countries like the UK which are hard hit by the financial crisis," says Suchitra Padmanabhan, Programme Manager, Waste Management, Frost & Sullivan. "In an effort to manage the current situations, utilities and waste management companies are encouraged to undertake projects which will create opportunities in key segments such as waste minimization and sorting and separation."
Moreover, Europe is continuing to lead the way with respect to proactive legislation such as the Waste Electronic and Electrical Equipment (WEEE) Directive as well as in its effective implementation. Coming in to 2009 the focus of the European Waste Management Industry is on growth opportunities in key markets such as Russia and the CEE, as well as key segments such as the medical waste management industry and waste to energy markets, all of which offer promising potential.
For more information about the Waste Management Market in Europe and our extensive research in the Green Energy Market in Europe and globally, please contact Chiara Carella, Corporate Communications Europe, at chiara.carella[.]frost.com. A complimentary brochure will be emailed to you.
GIL 2009: Europe
Frost & Sullivan has expanded its flagship Global Congress on Corporate Growth - GIL Global - into several major cities around the world including London. For the first time ever in Europe, Frost & Sullivan will be hosting the Growth, Innovation and Leadership Congress 'GIL 2009: Europe' on 19-20 May, at the Sofitel St James in London. GIL Global is the industry's only event designed to support senior executives in their efforts to achieve sustainable, top-line growth. To register, obtain a programme agenda, explore sponsorship opportunities, or attend as a member of the media for GIL 2009: Europe, please contact Chiara Carella, Head of Corporate Communications for Frost & Sullivan in Europe, at chiara.carella[.]frost.com. One-on-One interviews with Frost & Sullivan senior growth consultants are also being scheduled.
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