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When all the totting up comes to be done, the world electronics market will be found to have expanded by 7% in 1987 to $413,000m, according to a forecast made by the US Electronic Industries Association in Washington. The Association also forecast that total world electronic sales will reach $500,000m in 1990, representing an average annual growth rate of 6.6%. US consumption of electronics at $189,000m, represented almost 50% of the total world electronics market in 1986, and statistics based on the first eight months of 1987 indicate the US consumption growing to $200,000m for the full year, up 6%. Banging the drum for the industry, Association president Peter McCloskey declared, The figures we announce today demonstrate the depth and breadth of the US market for electronics. Much of our nation’s success in this sector has been based on the fact that we are the most open and free market in the world. We challenge our trading partners to emulate this philosophy, so that not only our industry, but the world economy as a whole, can continue to grow and prosper. The Association noted that Japan ranks second as a major electronics market, with 1986 consumption of $54,000m or 14% of total world electronics sales. Researchers estimate that Japan will maintain its share in 1987, when consumption is expected to increase more than 8% to $58,400m. By 1990, Japan’s share of the total market is forecast to increase slightly, to 15%. The West German market accounted for $24,100m, 6% of the world total, last year and is expected to reach $26,000m by the end of 1987. Budget deficit The UK and the other 12 major Western European countries together accounted for $81,000m, about 21%, of 1986 consumption. With Canada at 2.5%, Malaysia, Korea, Singapore and Taiwan accounted for about half the remaining $28,000m in electronics consumption during 1986. Breaking down the markets, the three largest segments are components, which make up 25% of the total, data processing equipment, which accounts for 22%, and communications equipment, making up 15%. Of the $500,000m total forecast for 1990, components are expected to reach $120,000m, with annual growth averaging 6.8% for the the period 1986-1990. The US currently accounts for about 50% of worldwide sales of electronic components. The communications sector should experience more moderate growth in the US at about 4.5% annually through 1990. Growth in the data processing sector is expected to be strong, particularly for software, over the next five years. The US produces 55% to 60% of world computer equipment and software. About $55,000m – over a quarter – of the forecast consumption for the US this year will be accounted for by defence electronics but the Association believes that the US defence electronics market will not experience any growth until 1991 because of the crimps being put on expenditure for defence and research and development – which will have to get more severe if the US is ever to get its deficit under control.

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CBR Staff Writer

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