CLEVELAND, OH — Global demand for countertops is projected to increase 3.3% annually to 341 million square meters in 2013, according to industry researcher The Freedonia Group Inc. As highlighted in the study, World Residential Countertops, advances will be aided as countries such as Brazil, China and India continue to build large volumes of modern housing units each year to accommodate the needs of their growing populations. The remodeling market, though, still accounts for the larger share of global countertop sales.

In 2008, laminate countertops accounted for more than one-quarter of global sales. Nearly 40% of laminate countertops were sold in North America, where laminate countertops lead demand because of cost and their variety of colors and textures. Solid surface and natural stone countertops each comprised one-fifth of global demand. Nearly 70% of solid surface countertops were sold in the Asia/Pacific region where they are low-cost options because of limited color offerings and a competitive local production base. Engineered stone — which is primarily used in the more developed countries due to its high cost — is expected to achieve the most rapid gains through 2013, albeit from a very small base.

The Asia/Pacific region, the largest market, accounted for 43% of global countertop sales in 2008. Advances in this market will be primarily driven by China, which accounted for nearly half of the region’s countertop sales in 2008. India is expected to post somewhat stronger gains through the forecast period as it also develops additional, modern housing to accommodate its population’s needs and the continuing migration from rural areas to cities. North America was the second largest regional market in 2008, accounting for 19% of global sales.


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