Mortar Ammunition Market - Growth, Trends, COVID-19 Impact, and Forecasts (2021 - 2030)
The Mortar Ammunition Market was valued at USD 69.75 million in 2020 and is projected to grow to USD 117.29 million by 2030 registering a CAGR of 5.21% during the forecast period (2021-2030).
The impact of COVID-19 on the overall market revenue is deemed to be less. However, the lockdown imposed by the governments in the major countries has caused disruptions in the supply chain which led to manufacturing delays for a short period of time in 2020. Although delivery delays are expected over a short duration during the forecast period, drastic fluctuations in demand due to the pandemic are not anticipated.
Several countries are expending significant resources toward augmenting their current military prowess, by procuring new weapon systems or modernizing their existing deployed systems with advanced ammunition rounds. The growth in territorial issues has also propelled the procurement of mortar systems by the land forces over the years.
Mortars are now witnessing rejuvenated demand due to new technology integration and enhanced scope of deployment by both infantry and artillery units of global armed forces. Several new mortar development programs are underway to develop lighter but deadlier mortar ammunition with an enhanced range. Furthermore, investments are being made into development of precision guided mortar ammunition. Such investments are anticipated to open new prospects for the market in the coming future.
Key Market Trends
Heavy Caliber Segment is Expected to Witness Highest Growth During the Forecast Period
The heavy caliber segment of the market is expected to witness the highest growth during the forecast period. Mortar ammunition with a caliber size of 100 mm and above are classified as heavy caliber mortars. Conventional heavy-caliber mortars have a range of 7,200m to 9,500m and can carry an explosive payload of 1.2kg to 4.2kg, depending on the size of the mortar. Heavy mortars are generally used to level enemy strongholds and decommission armored vehicles. Several nations across the globe have procurement programs underway as part of their extensive weaponry modernization program. For instance, in April 2020, the Armament Inspectorate, on behalf of the Polish MoD, commenced negotiations with the Polish Armaments Group for the planned procurement of additional 120mm Rak self-propelled mortar systems and command post vehicles (AWD). The estimated value of the contract is EUR 150 million and the deliveries of additional Rak mortars and command post vehicles commenced in 2020 and are anticipated to run through to 2026. The rise in demand has fostered extensive innovations in the heavy caliber mortar segment. In September 2020, South Korea announced its plans to mass-produce the indigenously developed 120mm self-propelled mortar system. In the same month, the South Korean government awarded a USD 648 million contract to produce the mortar system designed as a potential replacement to the aging 107mm mortar mounted based on the K200A1 tracked armored vehicle. The new mortar is equipped with automatic fire control and reloading system that can provide 360-degree firing coverage. Such developments and procurement orders of advanced munitions is expected to accelerate the growth of this segment during the forecast period.
Asia-Pacific Accounted for a Major Share in the Mortar Ammunition Market in 2020
The Asia-Pacific region is currently dominating the market and is expected to continue its dominance during the forecast period. Countries in the region such as China, India, and South Korea among others have been rapidly increasing their military spending over the past few years due to the ongoing geopolitical tensions in the region. China and India have increased their military expenditures by more than 25% and 30%, respectively during the period of 2015 – 2020. With such a growth in defense expenditure, these countries have been investing in the development and procurement of newer generation mortar systems and related ammunition. In March 2021, the Indian Army decommissioned two of the longest-serving artillery systems, the 130mm self-propelled M-46 catapult guns and 160mm Tampella Mortars from service, to make way for newer equipment employing the latest technologies. The procurement of new mortar systems is also expected to generate demand for related ammunition during the forecast period. The growing focus on indigenous development of mortar systems is projected to drive the growth of the market in the region. In June 2019, South Korea announced that Hanwha Defense and S&T Dynamics have developed a 120 mm self-propelled mortar system that can be integrated into an M113 tracked armored personnel carrier. The new mortar is equipped with automatic fire control and reloading system that can provide 360-degree firing coverage. Later, in September 2020, the South Korean government awarded a USD 648 million contract to produce the mortar system designed as a potential replacement to the aging 107mm mortar mounted based on the K200A1 tracked armored vehicle. Along with the procurement of advanced mortar systems, the companies are also acquiring advanced ammunition for the mortar systems. In April 2019, Elbit Systems announced that it was awarded a contract worth USD 30 million to supply STYLET, a precise Guided Mortar Munition (GMM), to an undisclosed customer in Asia-Pacific region. The contract will be performed over two years. STYLET is a multimode GPS/INS guided 120 mm GMM with a range of 1,000-8,500 m that is designed for tactical combat units and Special-Forces. Such investments and procurement of advanced precision guided mortar ammunition is anticipated to bolster the growth of the market in Asia-Pacific region during the forecast period.
The mortar ammunition market is fragmented. There are numerous suppliers supported and run by the government, locally, in each country that cater to the needs of the military. Most of these manufacturers produce all types of explosives and ammunition for the local military and, thus, have the capability to increase focus on certain ammunition and improve production rate on short notice as the supply chain is completely localized and supported by government funding and logistics. The major players in the mortar ammunition market are Elbit Systems Ltd, BAE Systems plc, Nammo AS, General Dynamics Corporation, and Saab AB. Companies are collaborating on the development of new ammunition and explore new market opportunities. For instance, companies like Singapore Technologies Engineering Ltd, SAMI, and Hanwha Defense have entered into collaborations in recent years for producing different kinds of ammunitions including those of mortars. Such collaborations are expected to help them increase their market presence and share in global markets during the forecast period. Advancements in mortar ammunition capabilities, like range, precision, and lethality are the major factors for manufacturers to attract new customers, while the partnership with manufacturers to locally produce munitions will allow them to enter new markets during the forecast period.
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