Water Desalination Equipment Market Size, Share & Trends Report

Water Desalination Equipment Market Size, Share & Trends Analysis Report By Technology (RO, MSF, MED), By Source (Seawater, River Water), By Application (Municipal, Industrial), By Region, And Segment Forecasts, 2020 - 2027

  • Published Date: Jun, 2020
  • Base Year for Estimate: 2019
  • Report ID: GVR-1-68038-489-5
  • Format: Electronic (PDF)
  • Historical Data: 2016 - 2018
  • Number of Pages: 113

Report Overview

The global water desalination equipment market size was estimated at USD 12.8 billion in 2019 and is anticipated to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 9.0% from 2020 to 2027. Rapid depletion in freshwater reserves and increasing water scarcity are expected to drive the demand for water desalination equipment over the forecast period.

U.S. water desalination equipment market size

The scarcity of freshwater reserves coupled with the rising demand for water in various arid regions, as these areas lack sources of surface water such as lakes and rivers, has resulted in augmenting the number of desalination plants globally. In addition, growing advancements in desalination technologies are further expected to propel the demand for the desalination equipment over the coming years.

The U.S. accounted for the largest market share in North America in 2019. The reverse osmosis technology segment accounted for the largest revenue share in the U.S. market. Several factors, including expanding industrial sector coupled with rising investments within the water infrastructure sector, are expected to boost the demand for water desalination equipment in the country over the forecast period.

Rising population across the globe is straining the existing natural water sources. Deteriorating environmental conditions such as altered weather patterns, increased pollution, and deforestation have resulted in water shortage and drought-like scenarios globally. The governments of various countries are investing in the development of desalination plants for countering this challenge, which, in turn, is expected to drive the demand for the equipment.

Rapid industrialization across the world has further strained the existing water resources. The development of industrial-based processes requires a large amount of water for manufacturing and other functions. Sectors such as agriculture, oil and gas, paper and pulp, and food and beverage require water for various processes. Growing demand for water by industrial end-users is expected to drive the demand for desalination plants, thereby expanding the demand for the equipment.

Governments around the world are adopting the Public-private Partnership (PPP) model to match the operational expertise provided by the private sector. In addition, government-led initiatives are anticipated to boost market growth, which, in turn, is expected to generate increased demand for desalination equipment over the forecast period.

Technology Insights

Reverse osmosis led the market and accounted for 58.6% of the global revenue in 2019. In Reverse Osmosis (RO), saline water is forced through a semipermeable membrane that filters salt molecules, thereby, removing salt from the water and producing freshwater. The demand for reverse osmosis technology is expected to grow owing to its properties such as low installation cost, easy processing, ability to treat all types of feed water, and minimal use of chemicals.

The Multi-stage Flash (MSF) distillation technology segment is anticipated to register a CAGR of 8.9% over the forecast period. Factors such as high Gain Output Ratio (GOR), ability to operate with dual-purpose power generation plants, easy operation, and low operation and maintenance costs are expected to augment technology adoption in desalination applications, thereby driving the demand for the equipment over the forecast period.

Multi-effect Distillation (MED) is a multi-effect process, wherein the feedwater is evaporated and condensed multiple times at low pressure and temperature. The high efficiency of the process, coupled with the use of low-temperature energy sources for supplying feed to the system, is expected to drive technology penetration in the market.

Other processes, such as the Electro Dialysis Reversal (EDR) desalination process involves the application of electricity to the electrodes in water, resulting in the removal of naturally occurring dissolved salts through the ion exchange membrane, thereby, separating salts from water. The end-products of the technology are water (having low salinity) and brine (a highly saline concentrate).

Source Insights

Seawater led the market and accounted for 60.4% share of the global revenue in 2019. The growing scarcity of water for domestic and industrial usage is projected to act as the key driver for augmenting the demand for seawater desalination equipment. Furthermore, the increasing emphasis on treating seawater to conserve freshwater reserves is anticipated to drive the demand for seawater desalination equipment over the forecast period.

The brackish water source segment is anticipated to progress at a CAGR of 9.1% from 2020 to 2027. Major technologies implemented for treating brackish water include reverse osmosis and electrodialysis. Brackish water desalination equipment helps convert inland brackish water into high-quality, freshwater suitable for various applications, including drinking, irrigation, and bathing.

The major advantage of desalinating brackish groundwater, compared to seawater, is its recovery rate. Furthermore, the amount of brine generated after the treatment of brackish water is less in volume and more concentrated than the brine obtained post-treatment of seawater, thereby, making the process environmentally friendly and increasing its penetration in the market.

The demand for river water desalination equipment is expected to be generated by the rapid urbanization of cities. The contaminants present in rivers include industrial waste such as caustic or nitrogen compounds and biological impurities such as algae, viruses, bacteria, turbidity, and suspended solids. The presence of nitrogen compounds in the river results in the depletion of oxygen content in the water due to the continuous activities of fungi and bacteria. This, in turn, is propelling the demand for the equipment.

Application Insights

Municipal led the market and accounted for a 50.6% share of the global revenue in 2019. The growth in urban infrastructure around the world has put a strain on resources such as water and electricity. Furthermore, the declining cost of desalinated water, coupled with the increasing cost of surface water in urban areas is anticipated to augment the demand for the equipment in the municipal sector.

The municipal sector is responsible for providing potable water to the urban population globally. Factors including the growing urban population coupled with expanding megacities across the globe are likely to constrain the capacity of municipal sectors to provide water. Thus, this is expected to emerge as a key sector for the growth of the water desalination equipment market over the forecast period for countering such challenges.

Global water desalination equipment market share

The industrial application segment is projected to witness a CAGR of 9.3% over the forecast period. Rapid industrial development in growing economies such as India, Thailand, and Malaysia is anticipated to contribute to the increasing demand for equipment in the industrial sector. The industrial sectors such as pharmaceuticals, food and beverage, paper and pulp, and manufacturing are expected to grow due to the increasing global population.

In addition, increasing investments in research and development in the desalination industry have resulted in the utilization of the waste generated from power plants and refineries to run the desalination plants. The operation of desalination plants on renewable energy sources, including solar and wind, is likely to reduce the overall plant operational costs. These factors are, in turn, expected to drive the demand for the equipment in the industrial application segment.

Regional Insights

Middle East and Africa dominated the market and accounted for 43.8% share of the global revenue in 2019. The major reason being the scarcity of freshwater resources in this region is expected to create a strong demand for the desalination equipment over the forecast period. In addition, ongoing expansions in the water desalination sector are further anticipated to fuel market growth.

Moreover, rising per-capita consumption of water in the Middle East and Africa coupled with expanding population owing to increased immigration into the region is anticipated to increase the demand for water. Furthermore, a rise in tourism, especially in the Middle East region, is expected to strain the water resources here. The factors mentioned above are, in turn, anticipated to drive the demand for the equipment over the forecast period.

Asia Pacific is expected to witness a CAGR of 9.7% over the forecast period. Growing population, rapid urbanization, intensified industrialization, and extensive agricultural development has strained the existing water resources in the region. Moreover, the climatic changes are further likely to aggravate the water stress in the region. Thus, the aforementioned factors are anticipated to drive the demand for the equipment in the coming years.

Rising demand for freshwater in North America due to the expanding population is likely to create growth opportunities for the market in the region. Moreover, increasing oil and gas exploration activities in the U.S. and Canada are further expected to drive the demand for the equipment in the region over the forecast period.

Key Companies & Market Share Insights

The market comprises several major players engaged in the designing, manufacturing, and commissioning water desalination equipment. Major companies offer end-to-end services, which includes the design, construction, start-up, plant operation, and maintenance of desalination facilities. In addition, market players are engaged in continuous research and development for optimizing desalination technology solutions.

The key customers in the market include the municipalities, local, and government authorities in a particular region, which offer contracts for the construction of desalination plants. Companies in the market also form joint ventures with other companies to construct desalination plants. In addition, water desalination equipment manufacturers are adopting various strategies such as mergers and acquisitions and partnerships to gain competitive advantage. Some of the prominent players in the water desalination equipment market include:

  • Acciona, S.A.

  • Veolia

  • SUEZ

  • IDE Technologies

  • Abengoa

  • Ferrovial, S.A.

  • Fisia Italimpianti S.p.A.

  • Doosan Heavy Industries & Construction

  • Biwater Holdings Limited

  • Xylem

  • Genesis Water Technologies

  • Aquatech International LLC

  • Guangzhou KangYang Seawater Desalination Equipment Co., Ltd.

Water Desalination Equipment Market Report Scope

Report Attribute


Market size value in 2020

USD 12.8 billion

Revenue forecast in 2027

USD 25.7 billion

Growth Rate

CAGR of 9.0% from 2020 to 2027

Base year for estimation


Historical data

2016 - 2018

Forecast period

2020 - 2027

Quantitative units

Revenue in USD billion and CAGR from 2020 to 2027

Report coverage

Revenue forecast, company ranking, competitive landscape, growth factors, and trends

Segments covered

Technology, source, application, region

Regional scope

North America; Europe; Asia Pacific; Central & South America; Middle East & Africa

Country scope

U.S.; Spain; China; India; Australia; Chile; UAE; Saudi Arabia

Key companies profiled

Acciona S.A.; Doosan Heavy Industries & Construction; Veolia; SUEZ; IDE Technologies; Xylem; Aquatech International LLC; Biwater Holdings Limited; Genesis Water Technologies; Guangzhou KangYang Seawater Desalination Equipment Co., Ltd. (KYSEARO); Abengoa ; Ferrovial, S.A.; Fisia Italimpianti S.p.A.

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Segments Covered in the Report

This report forecasts revenue growth at global, regional, and country levels, and provides an analysis of the latest industry trends in each of the sub-segments from 2016 to 2027. For the purpose of this study, Grand View Research has segmented the global water desalination equipment market on the basis of technology, source, application, and region.

  • Technology Outlook (Revenue, USD Billion, 2016 - 2027)

    • Reverse Osmosis

    • Multi-Stage Flash (MSF) Distillation

    • Multi-Effect Distillation (MED)

    • Others

  • Source Outlook (Revenue, USD Billion, 2016 - 2027)

    • Seawater

    • Brackish water

    • River water

    • Others

  • Application Outlook (Revenue, USD Billion, 2016 - 2027)

    • Municipal

    • Industrial

    • Others

  • Regional Outlook (Revenue, USD Billion, 2016 - 2027)

    • North America

      • The U.S.

    • Europe

      • Spain

    • Asia Pacific

      • China

      • India

      • Australia

    • Central & South America

      • Chile

    • Middle East & Africa

      • UAE

      • Saudi Arabia

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