World sales of passive components in 2021

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World sales of passive components started growing again in 2021: the demand by various sectors, household appliances included, has recovered liveliness and manufacturers, in their turn, struggle to satisfy all requests.

Unlike semiconductors, for which there are accurate timely statistical surveys, carried out by trade organizations and in particular by WSTS, there are no official data for the other categories of electronic components, that is to say passive, printed circuit boards, interconnections, electromechanical components and similar. Concerning passive, EPCIA trade association has European character or, more precisely, it includes the sector companies headquartered in EMEA, the area consisting of Europe, Middle East and Africa. It yearly takes care of precise data and diffuses them, but they are however limited to its geographical area, which in 2021 represented just 16.4% of the world sector market. Besides, there are various surveys by research agencies: all data diffused by them are anyway discordant. Therefore, in this article we are reporting the few unofficial data and the studies about the whole sector, carried out by the well-documented German ZVEI trade association.

The market
After two years of negative trend, the world sales of passive components, which represent 4% of the component sector, started growing again in 2021. Nevertheless, the 7.2% increase registered is partly a consequence of the rise in prices; the real growth in quantity is likely to be by 3-4%.
Among the 5 conventional areas, into which sector statistics subdivide our planet, China is the most dynamic, whereas also the Rest Asia Pacific features a growth exceeding the average, unlike the other 3 geographical areas.
Among the 4 categories into which passive are split, capacitors, which alone constitute 54% of the total, scored the most considerable growth, regardless of filters. Concerning the latter, the strong increase is partly apparent and due to the data rounding up to one hundred million of US Dollars.

Photo: Murata

Application sectors
Information technology is now the main application sector whereas, although the vehicle production is static owing to the insufficient availability of semiconductors, the gradual shift towards the electric car creates a new demand. Its effects are still felt to a limited extent, but it is common opinion that the future will be notably influenced.

Production
Passive are produced by about 70% in Far East and in particular in Japan, in Taiwan, in China and in South Korea. Slightly less than 25% are manufactured in the USA and about 5% in EMEA.
World leader is the Japanese Group Murata: it is followed by the compatriot Kyocera, AVX and TDK, the Taiwanese Yageo and the United States Vishay and Kemet Corp.
In China there are around one hundred of smaller companies, which produce passive in addition to other types of components.

Prospects
At the end of 2021, a positive phase seems to have started for passive components: the computer and automotive industry’s demand has become lively again and manufacturers, for the first time after years, struggle to satisfy all requests.
Concerning the year in course, we expect a net growth by 10% or slightly exceeding such figure. Obviously, these forecasts do not take the world economic-political situation into account.

Consumption of passive components from 2019 to 2021 in the main geographical areas and by categories (in Billions of dollars)
201920202021% variat. 2021/20
Total28.627.929.97.2
EMEA5.04.74.94.3
Of which: Germany2.32.12.39.5
Americas2.82.93.16.9
Japan1.91.81.8 -
China13.613.414.69.0
Rest Asia Pacific5.35.15.57.8
Capacitors14.914.816.18.8
Inductors7.06.7 6.93.0
Resistors5.85.66.07.1
Filters0.90.80.912.5
Sources: EPCIA (European Passive Components Industries Association), ZVEI (Zentralverband Elektrotechnik- und Elektronikindustrie), ECIA (Electronic Components Industry Association)

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