The global submarine power cables market, which exceeded US$5.8 billion in revenue by the end of 2022, is anticipated to reach a valuation of over US$11 billion by 2027, according to a report by Fairfield Market Research. Despite the robust growth expected during the forecast period, the high installation costs, accounting for 30-40% of overall expenses, are expected to pose short-term challenges.
Demand for Better Power Transmission Drives Submarine Power Cables Market
The rising deployment of power generators utilizing variable renewable sources like wind and solar has led to power balancing challenges in electricity systems. Interconnecting electricity systems to aggregate remotely located variable power sources is crucial for achieving power balance and sharing balancing resources. Submarine power cables, known for efficiently transmitting bulk electric power across large distances, including deep-water bodies, are positioned to address this need, driving the growth of the global submarine power cables market.
Increased Investments in Offshore Projects Fuel Market Expansion
The global energy demand is projected to grow by over a third by 2035. This significant demand for energy, coupled with the push for reduced CO2 emissions, has led to rapid developments in green energy, particularly offshore wind power. The pursuit of net-zero carbon emissions has laid the foundation for offshore wind power projects, which are expected to drive the demand for submarine power cables in the coming years. Mounting investments in offshore wind power and offshore oil and gas projects will further boost the submarine power cables market.
Challenges Hindering Growth
High installation costs, technical installation challenges, and the potential for damages due to human intervention are the major challenges hindering the growth of the submarine power cables market. These infrastructural elements require substantial financial investments to be built and installed, and repairing them in case of faults is costly and complex. Therefore, careful selection of cable routes is essential to minimize environmental impact and maximize cable protection.
Copper Conductor Dominates the Market
Copper conductor-based submarine power cables held over 70% market share in 2021, primarily due to the high demand for copper conductor and its advantages over aluminum conductor. Although aluminum is used for power cable conductors in some industrial applications, copper remains the preferred material for underground cables in many countries.
Increased Investments in Offshore Wind Power Benefiting Demand
Offshore wind power accounted for over 65% of the market share in 2021. Governments and power suppliers are increasingly supporting renewable energy sources like wind power. Oil and gas companies are also replacing less efficient and CO2-emitting gas-turbine generation with power supplies from the mainland, driving the demand for submarine cable solutions with lower environmental impact.
Single Core High Voltage Cables Dominate
Single core cables constituted 79.3% of the market share in 2021. These cables, with a single core of metal, are preferred due to their technical ease and cost-effectiveness compared to multicore cables. Single core cables are suitable for long-distance coverage, experiencing lower reverse current compared to multicore cables.
Asia Pacific to Lead Market Growth
Asia Pacific, led by Japan and China, accounted for over 30% of the market share in 2021. India, in particular, is emerging as a strategic destination for global underwater cables due to its geographic location. The region’s increasing investments in high-voltage submarine cables for inter-country and island connections are driving its dominance. The shift towards renewable energy in Europe is expected to drive demand for submarine power cables.
Global Submarine Power Cables Market: Competitive Landscape
Key players in the submarine power cables market include Nexans S.A., Prysmian Group, NKT A/S, Furukawa Electric Co., Ltd., Sumitomo Electric Industries, Ltd., ABB, LS Cable & System Ltd, ZTT, KEI Industries Limited, and Hengtong Marine Cable Systems, among others.
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