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IE expo China 2019: Chinese wastewater industry in the focus of international companies

  • Chinese government invests in wastewater management
  • Industrial and municipal sectors: demand for wastewater and sewage sludge treatment processes
  • German and international enterprises rate the market opportunities as good


Water—especially clean water—is a scarce resource in China. More than 80 percent of the groundwater are considered contaminated to different degrees, according to a report of GTAI (Germany Trade & Invest). Improving the quality of the drinking water will require huge investments in the field of wastewater and sewage sludge treatment: the Chinese government’s 13th five-year plan (2016–2020) budgeted 85 billion US dollars. The demands on the treatment of industrial wastewater have increased as well. The experts and exhibitors at IE expo China 2019—Asia’s leading environmental technology trade show—will emphasize the market opportunities that arise for international companies.


Wastewater and sewage sludge treatment ranks first

“When it comes to treatment plants, Chinese cities have considerable catching up to do,” said Prof. Dr. Martin Wagner, Professor of Wastewater Technology at the Technical University of Darmstadt, Germany and Head of the Regional Section China of the German Water Partnership (GWP). While Germany had over 8,000 sewage plants, there were only around 3,000 in China, according to Wagner. Less than sixty digestion plants existed throughout the country, and even less incineration plants. Another challenge: the seepage water from the landfills was highly contaminated with heavy metals and hence polluted the groundwater. In addition to incineration plants for sewage sludge and other treatment processes, there was demand for water recycling technologies—for example, membrane plants that remove smallest particles from contaminated water or disinfection plants for sewage treatment plants. Both the industrial and the municipal sector had a great need here, explained Wagner.


International companies capture Chinese market

Many German and international manufacturers are meanwhile successfully active on the Chinese wastewater market. One example is the Swiss company Endress+Hauser: since 1995, it has been present in China with sales centers; since 2002, it has been manufacturing flowmeters there. “In the field of water and wastewater, we observe a great demand for electromagnetic and ultrasonic flowmeters. With our new product generation «Proline» we determined that there is a strong demand for digital features in terms of device operation and verification (Heartbeat Technology),” said Dr. Bernd-Josef Schäfer, Managing Director of Endress+Hauser Flowtec AG. According to Schäfer, particularly the fields of digitization and solutions will offer market opportunities for international companies in the future.


Also the Austrian plant engineering group ANDRITZ has been active in the Middle Kingdom for many decades. “In China, we produce a wide range of products for mechanical separation as well as plant parts for thermal drying, namely high-performance ANDRITZ centrifuges and membrane filter presses,” said Dr. Michael Buchbauer, Spokesman of ANDRITZ AG. Particularly in thermal drying, the demand for foreign technologies increases, as Chinese companies cannot or can only partially supply this demand. “The disposal of sewage sludge is a key issue for the local market. The technological development aims at increasing the dry content of the sludge cake and at reducing the volume of sludge,” said Buchbauer. In addition, the group expects continuing good market opportunities for conventional separation solutions.


Gebr. Bellmer GmbH from Germany has been represented in Shanghai since 2005 with its subsidiary Bellmer China that produces and assembles the WinklePress—a belt filter press for dewatering different types of sludge—and the TurboDrain—a belt thickener for thickening sludge and process water filtration—as well as process water screens. According to the company, all machines produced in Shanghai are intended for the Chinese market only and the potential particularly lies with technologies for sewage sludge disposal. Rüdiger Kühner, Sales and R&D Director: “In the future as well, sewage sludge disposal will play a key role in the Chinese sector of dewatering sludge in wastewater treatment. Thanks to its Separation Technology range Bellmer offers efficient and innovative solutions here.”


IE expo China to expect further global players

At IE expo China, which will take place from April 15 to 17, 2019 in Shanghai, additional international enterprises will showcase their innovative technologies that could enhance the Chinese wastewater sector. These include the German manufacturers Aqseptence, Huber, Netzsch and Wilo, the US group Xylem, the Danish company Grundfos and De Nora from Italy. The 150,000-square meter exhibition space in the Shanghai New International Expo Centre (SNIEC) is expected to attract around 2,000 exhibitors. At the Chinese subsidiary fair of IFAT in Munich, the visitors will be able to explore wastewater technologies as well as solutions for water supply, waste treatment, recycling and air pollution control.


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About IE expo China

IE expo China—presented by IFAT—is Asia’s Leading Trade Fair for Environmental Technology: Solutions for Water, Waste, Air and Soil. The organizer of the event is Messe Muenchen Zhongmao Co., Ltd.—a joint venture by Messe München Shanghai Co. Ltd. and Shanghai ZM International Exhibition Co. Ltd. Spanning 128,000 square meters of exhibitions space, the 2018 edition of IE expo China 2018 attracted 1,762 exhibitors from 26 countries and 66,580 visitors from 59 countries. The next event will take place from April 15 to 17, 2019 at the Shanghai New International Expo Centre (SNIEC). With IE expo Guangzhou and IE expo Chengdu there are also two regional editions of the trade fair, focusing on the markets in South and West China.


IFAT worldwide

Messe München not only demonstrates its considerable expertise in organizing environmental technology trade shows with the world’s leading trade fair IFAT. Other international events include IE expo China in Shanghai, IE expo Chengdu in Chengdu, IE expo Guangzhou in Guangzhou, IFAT Africa in Johannesburg, IFAT Eurasia in Istanbul and IFAT India in Mumbai. Additionally, IFAT is a strategic partner of FENASAN and Waste Expo Brasil in Brazil. Together, the IFAT events form the world’s leading network for environmental technologies.


Messe München

Messe München is one of the leading exhibition organizers worldwide with more than 50 of its own trade shows for capital goods, consumer goods and new technologies. Every year, a total of over 50,000 exhibitors and around three million visitors take part in more than 200 events at the exhibition center in Munich, at the ICM – Internationales Congress Center München and the MOC Veranstaltungscenter München as well as abroad. Together with its subsidiary companies, Messe München organizes trade shows in China, India, Brazil, Russia, Turkey, South Africa, Nigeria, Vietnam and Iran. With a network of associated companies in Europe, Asia, Africa and South America as well as around 70 representations abroad for over 100 countries, Messe München has a global presence.


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