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Continuous Ship Unloader Market

Continuous Ship Unloader Market By Unloading Rate (100 – 1200 TPH, 1200 – 2800 TPH, 2800 – 4500 TPH), By Product Type (Mechanical, Pneumatic), By Mechanical Type (Bucket Chain, Screw Conveyor, Twin Belt, Bucket Wheel), By Mobility - Global Market Insights 2021 to 2031

Analysis of Continuous Ship Unloader market covering 30 + countries including analysis of US, Canada, UK, Germany, France, Nordics, GCC countries, Japan, Korea and many more

Continuous Ship Unloader Market Outlook

Continuous ship unloaders are particularly suited for import ports that discharge bulk material, especially those that discharge high volumes of material such as iron ore, coal, and grains. A bucket-chain elevator is employed to effectively claim all material from a ship's hold and transfer it to a conveying system. Since unloading is continuous, these machines are highly efficient and are able to discharge significant volumes in a short space of time. Due to the enclosed nature of these machines, they significantly reduce environmental footprint, specifically dust emissions, and therefore, are well-suited for operating in particularly sensitive areas.

Foremost objective of the report by Fact.MR on continuous ship unloaders is to pitch insights on the market scenario, demand generators, and market strategies in this space. The report provides a taxonomy, elaborating on key segments. The report also outlines visionary insights on the dynamics of the market, including the drivers, restraints, opportunities, trends, and pricing analysis, along with key success factors. Market trends have been tracked in 20+ high-growth countries, pointing towards countries in East Asia, Europe, and North America holding bulk of the market share.

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Historical Trends Vs Future Projections

Historically, the expanded at a CAGR of 4.2% from 2016 to 2020, which is quite low when compared to what lies ahead. The reason for a higher CAGR for the forecast period is increasing port development projects in developed as well as developing countries. Increasing industrialisation in developing economies is demanding large amounts of coal and iron ore, which are imported from iron ore- and coal-rich countries.

Even during the COVID-19 pandemic, key developing countries have resumed their mega projects, such as China’s Belt and Road and India’s Sagarmala, which aided the market in keeping up its pace. In the most likely scenario, the continuous ship unloaders market is expected to cross the US$ 450 Mn mark by 2031.

Fluctuations in capacity and downtime have a significant impact on costs and overall operations. Continuous ship unloader manufacturing units are mainly based in East Asia and Europe; however; customers for the product have grown globally. Due to their high unloading rate, continuous ship unloaders are gaining prominence over grab type unloaders across the world.

What are the Key Drivers in the Continuous Ship Unloaders Market?

Dry bulk primarily consists of materials that function as raw material inputs for the production of intermediate or finished goods, such as concrete, electricity, steel, and food. And since, growth in this goods is seen as an efficient economic indicator of future economic growth and production, growth in continuous ship unloaders can be expected during the forecast period.

Another key factor accelerating market growth is rising demand for grains and other dry bulk commodities in Western countries. Consequently, global importers and exporters are searching for ways to increase productivity in material handling, leading to growing shift from medium to large capacity continuous barge/ship unloaders to unload bulk materials.

Latest technologies provide new opportunities to achieve greater sustainability in shipping and ports, as well as enhanced performance and efficiency. Digitalization and joint collaborative platforms and solutions enabled by new technologies and innovations, including Blockchain, are being increasingly used by the shipping industry, transforming business and partnership models.

Continuous Ship Unloader Market

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Which Region Offers Larger Opportunity for Manufacturers of Continuous Ship Unloaders?

The Asia Pacific region accounts for more than 40% of the global continuous ship unloaders market share. The region is expected to offer around US$ 100 Mn of absolute dollar opportunity through 2031. The reason for such high market share is the perfect demand-supply chain between South and East Asia. Other than this, as trade in South Asia is growing at a fast pace, demand for continuous ship unloaders is also increasing. However, growing disputes between China and other Asia Pacific countries such as Australia, the Philippines, etc., are likely to hinder market growth to some extent.

Rising inland maritime trade in Europe and port development are key factors aiding market expansion in European countries. However, environmental regulations and BREXIT are the some of the factors that are affecting growth of this regional market.

Governments in Latin America have undertaken various regulations to resume trade and businesses even at the time of pandemic. Market growth of this region is the highest among others, owing to rising trade with North American and East Asian countries.

continuous ship unloaders market region by FactMR

Country-wise Analysis

What Makes China the Hub for Continuous Ship Unloaders?

China has a developed shipping industry resulting in reaching efficient manufacturing of related machineries and equipment. Apart from this, long-distance trade relations with countries such as Brazil, the United States, and others have allowed the country to earn huge profits as far as continuous ship unloaders are concerned. Large number of big ship manufacturers such as ZMPC, HSHI, DHHI, etc., having strong trade relations, are engaged in building continuous ship unloaders.

China currently holds a share of around 60% in the East Asian market, and is expected to have a market value of nearly US$ 74 Mn in 2031. Continuous ship unloaders with throughput rate less than 1,200 TPH have the highest market share of more than 45% in the country. The market in China is expected to expand at a CAGR of nearly close to 7% during the forecast period.

Is Growing Mergers among European Manufacturers Benefitting Germany?

Germany’s huge advancements in manufacturing processes have led to high market expansion in the country. Number of rivers are passing through the country, enabling the usage of inland water transportation. This has consequently made demand from the country as well as nearby countries high.

The continuous ship unloaders industry in Germany is anticipated to expand at a CAGR of close to 6% over the next ten years. The country has huge potential for bucket chain type unloaders, which currently hold a market share of around 44% for mechanical continuous ship unloaders. Germany currently holds a share of more than 16% in the European market, and is expected to reach a market value of nearly US$ 19 Mn in 2031.

Which Factors Influencing Strategies of Continuous Ship Unloader Manufacturers in the U.S.?

Easy availability of iron and coal required for the manufacturing of continuous ship unloaders is a key factor which has lowered the cost of manufacturing in the U.S. While many manufacturers do not have good establishment in overseas markets, growth of manufacturers in the United State has lowered profit margins than East Asian manufacturers. Some manufacturers have placed contractors in foreign locations, yet, the number of such countries is not very high.

The market in the U.S. is anticipated to expand at a CAGR over 5% during the forecast period. Absolute dollar opportunity for the country over the forecast period is projected to be US$ 29 Mn. In the United States, continuous ship unloaders used to unload iron ore and coal will have a market value of more than US$ 28 Mn in the year 2021.

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Category-wise Insights

Why is Demand for Mid-sized Continuous Ship Unloaders Growing Globally?

Continuous ship unloaders with throughput rate between 1,200 to 2,800 tons per hour are the most preferred in East Asia and Central America, due to the extensive use of Panamax type of vessels in many regions.

Why are Iron Ore and Coal the Most Popular Unloading?

Demand for coal and iron ore is increasing in developing countries due to large number of developmental activities. This requires these countries to import these materials from other nations, which consequently increases demand for continuous ship unloaders at ports. Other than that, high import of grains has led to a large number of installations of continuous ship unloaders in Western countries.

Which Product Type is More Preferred by End-use Industries?

Mechanical continuous ship unloaders, due to their higher unloading rate, have acquired a larger share across the world. On the other hand, pneumatic unloaders are usually installed to carry out the unloading of small vessels. Among mechanical unloaders, bucket chain unloaders are more preferable by end users due to their high throughput rate.

How has COVID-19 Obstructed the Sales of Continuous Ship Unloaders?

Globally, COVID-19 has caused governments across the world to divert their capital from infrastructural projects to basic survival needs. Globally, the continuous ship unloaders industry is expected to have incurred a loss of over US$ 12 Mn in the year 2020. Due to early adoption of COVID prevention measures, most key players in regions such as East Asia were able to continue their business with other developing countries. Although European countries experienced a higher impact of COVID-19, resulting in obstruction in intra-continental trade, demand for continuous ship unloaders did not drop much in this region.

What are the Factors Affecting the Prices of Continuous Ship Unloaders?

Expansion of import-export business in East Asia has assisted development of the shipping industry. This has consequently benefited continuous ship unloader manufacturers in the region because of easy availability of technology and raw materials at cheaper prices. This is the key factor that has influenced the prices and profit margins for continuous ship unloader manufacturers across regions.

Availability of number of iron & steel mills nearby continuous ship unloader manufacturers has decreased the bargaining power of suppliers, and, as such, further increased the profit margins of manufacturers in this space. Manufacturers hiring contractors to look after overseas biddings have to pay for the sales that come under the operating cost of the product.

Competitive Landscape

continuous ship unloaders market competition by FactMR

Majority of companies discussed in the report have focused on establishing subsidiaries in developing regions. These strategies include product launches, collaborations with key players, partnerships, acquisitions, and strengthening of regional and global distribution networks. Some of the key developments in this market are:

  • Tenova launched TSX SmartBurner for reheating furnaces and to decarbonize steel production. It is the first flameless burner of a megawatts family that has been tested with 100% of hydrogen successfully, and can be utilized in the manufacturing of continuous ship unloaders.
  • In December 2020, Kawasaki announced the completion of an LPG-powered marine diesel engine, designed for being capable of using both, LPG fuel and marine diesel oil, along with a system that reduces fuel consumption and enables the engine to meet NOx Tier 3 regulations.

Similarly, recent developments related to companies manufacturing continuous ship unloaders have been tracked by the team at Fact.MR, which are available in the full report.

Report Scope



Market size value in 2020

USD 27 Billion

Market forecast value in 2031

USD 43.3 Billion

Growth Rate

CAGR of 5% from 2021 to 2031

Forecast Period


Historical Data Available for


Market Analysis

US$ Mn for Value

Key Regions Covered

  • North America
  • Latin America
  • Europe
  • East Asia
  • South Asia
  • Oceania
  • Middle East & Africa

Key Countries Covered

  • China
  • Japan
  • South Korea
  • Germany
  • U.K.
  • France
  • Italy
  • Spain
  • United States
  • Canada
  • India
  • Singapore
  • Indonesia
  • Brazil
  • Mexico
  • Turkey
  • Australia

Key Market Segments Covered

  • Unloading Rate
  • Product Type
  • Mobility
  • Unloading Material
  • Region

Key Companies Profiled

  • ThyssenKrupp
  • FLSmidth
  • IHI Transport Machinery
  • Bruks Siwertell
  • Jiangsu Rainbow Heavy Industries
  • Tenova
  • Metso Outotec
  • Bühler Holding AG
  • Shanghai Zhenhua Heavy Industries Co.
  • HSHI
  • Kawasaki Heavy Industries
  • Sumitomo Heavy Industries, Ltd.
  • FAM Group
  • DHHI
Customization & Pricing

Available upon Request

Key Segments Covered

  • By Unloading Rate

    • 100 – 1200 TPH
    • 1200 – 2800 TPH
    • 2800 – 4500 TPH
  • By Product Type

    • Mechanical
      • Bucket Chain Type
      • Screw Conveyor Type
      • Twin Belt Type
      • Bucket Wheel Type
    • Pneumatic
  • By Mobility

    • Stationary
    • Mobile
      • Port Mobile
      • Road Mobile
  • By Unloading Material

    • Iron Ore
    • Coal
    • Grains
    • Others
  • Region

    • East Asia
    • Europe
    • North America
    • South Asia
    • Latin America
    • Middle East & Africa
    • Oceania

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By value, Fact.MR has projected a CAGR of more than 6% for the continuous ship unloaders market through 2031. In terms of volume, the market is expected to have experience around 4% CAGR over the forecast period.

As per Fact.MR’s projections, MEA countries would experience the highest growth rate. Other than that, in the Asia Pacific region, South Korea and Indonesia are expected to witness the highest CAGRs.

Prominent players manufacturing continuous ship unloaders include ThyssenKrupp, FLSmidth, IHI Transport Machinery, Bruks Siwertell, Jiangsu Rainbow Heavy Industries, Tenova, Metso Outotec, Buhler, ZMPC, HSHI, Kawasaki Heavy Industries, Sumitomo Heavy I

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