All the major geographical regions have been hit, though the Middle East has seen a particularly sharp contraction. Nevertheless, the latest BSRIA research uncovered considerable variation within regions. In Europe, for example, the German market has suffered less than France, Italy or the UK. This reflects the relative severity of the impact of COVID-19 in terms of lockdowns and reduced economic activity.
North America has seen a decline in line with the world’s average, in Asia, China has staged a strong recovery, reflecting its relative success in containing the pandemic, while India, in contrast, has been hit hard, with much of the industrial economy curtailed.
Forecasts of future recovery depend heavily on how far and how fast the pandemic is brought under control, but recent announcements about vaccines increases the likelihood of the return to the more “normal” conditions in some countries during 2021.
Our findings confirm that verticals including hotels and hospitality and transport have been particularly hard hit by the pandemic, with many companies adopting a “wait and see” approach. In contrast many countries have been increasing investment in health facilities, both to increase the number of patients that can be treated and to improve the environment offered.
We are also seeing signs that the theme of wellbeing in buildings, which was already much talked about before the pandemic, is increasingly reflected in sales of actual solutions, whether it is a case of improving ventilation and air quality or monitoring the location of people within a building to maintain a safe environment.