Counter-IED market in decline – report


The global counter-IED market this year is worth US$6.4 billion, but the market will decline from unusually high levels of spending, a new report says. However, robust demand is still expected over the next decade as insurgents and terrorists continue to plant improvised explosive devices (IEDs).

Visiongain earlier reported global spending on counter-IED systems as amounting to US$7.7 billion in 2009. Its latest report, The Counter-IED Market 2011-2021: Systems and Technologies for Force Protection, says that even in the era of defence spending cuts, countries are still looking to acquire counter-IED systems to address this persistent menace.

Improvised explosive devices (IEDs) have proven to be an effective and increasingly preferred weapon by insurgents, primarily in Iraq and later in Afghanistan, along with many other places in the world. Many of the world’s leading armed forces have responded by spending heavily on equipment that will protect against IEDs, such as mine-resistant vehicles, jammers that block radio signals meant to detonate IEDs, detection and disposal systems, and robots and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). While demand has peaked in recent years, spending on counter-IED spending remains significant. IEDs, being cheap and relatively easy to make with widely available material are expected to remain a threat in future conflicts.

The US remains the main spender on counter-IED systems, although its share will decline slightly, albeit it will still be the leading market over the next decade. A number of countries in Europe remain key markets and there are there are countries in Asia and the Middle East seen to significantly increase spending on counter-IED systems over the decade.

Due to the threat of IEDs, the global market for armoured and counter IED vehicles is following a similar trend to the counter-IED market. Earlier this year a study estimated the value of the armoured and counter IED vehicle market as amounting to US$25.1 billion this year. The market is expected to decline as global operations in Afghanistan and Iraq come to an end, and will reach US$24.1 billion by 2021. The cumulative market value for armoured vehicles and counter IED vehicles between now and then is estimated at US$265 billion.

The demand for armoured vehicles in Africa is expected to be strong in the forecast period, driven by the discovery of new mineral and oil resources, and territorial and ethnic disputes. However, the small defence budget of countries in the region will result in a small market share of 4.1%.