The global ICT technology market is booming thanks to accelerating demand for electric components in Internet-of-Things (IoT) devices, according to a new report released by the UN Conference on Trade and Development (UNCTAD).
Trade in ICT goods reached US$2.1 trillion in 2017, a 6% year-on-year (YoY) increase, signalling the first spike in trade since 2014.
Within those figures, trade in electronic components, which are needed for the manufacture of electronic circuits and semiconductors, grew by 8% worldwide.
New figures show that burgeoning demand for the Internet-of-Things #IoT devices is propelling exponential growth in the trade of electronic components – to the benefit of developing countries.
— UNCTAD (@UNCTAD) March 11, 2019
According to UNCTAD, China is still the biggest exporter of ICT goods, but South Korea enjoyed the largest growth of all as its exports grew by 29%.
By contrast, the US is the market’s biggest importer and saw its purchases grow by 9% in 2017.
The IoT market in 2019 is estimated to be $745 billion and is growing at a rate of 15% every year.
Speaking about the growth Shamika N. Sirimanne, Director of the Technology and Logistics Division, UNCTAD, said: “This is the first time that global ICT goods imports have rebounded since 2014, showing a good 6% annual growth and bringing a reprieve to the past two years of decline.
“The expansion of electronic components, which are the basic building blocks of electronic circuits and semiconductors, reflects the fact that more and more products and activities are going digital worldwide.
“Much of this trend can be associated with the advent of the IoT, which has witnessed unprecedented growth since 2015. This trend may be further accentuated in the coming years.”