World air conditioning market: strong growth in 2010

According to JARN estimates, the global market for air conditioners (ACs) was about 89 million units in 2010, a 21% increase compared with 2009. 2010 was a bumper year for the AC industry thanks to global economic recovery, especially in Asia, and hot weather worldwide.
China strengthened its leading position: 36.2 million units were sold (+28%) and about 43 million ACs were exported from China in 2010 (+47%). Some 12.7 million units were sold in the US (+7%), 11.4 million in Asian countries excluding China and Japan (+15%), 8.9 million in Japan (+21%) and 6.4 million in Europe (+31%) where Russia became the largest European market (1.9 million units). Figures from other major world markets are: 5.7 million units in Latin America (+28%), 4.3 million in the Middle East (+7%), 2.2 million in Africa (+20%) and 0.9 million in Oceania (-4%).
Energy efficiency improvement is one of the driving forces of the AC market. In this context, the growth of the inverter AC market at an unprecedented pace around the world is to be pointed out; for example, inverter models now account for 100% of the Japanese market. In China, the proportion of inverter ACs accounts for around 27% and is expected to reach about 50% in 2011. The proportion is 50% in Australia and 25% in Europe. World VRF  (Variable Refrigerant Flow) demand is also growing, representing 671 700 units in 2010 with 328 000 for the Chinese market.
JARN, May 25, 2011