However, the overall rate of growth is slower than in previous years. “Very high growth rates in Europe and Africa/Middle East are offset by low growth or slightly decreasing rates in Asia, North America and the CIS,” SCI explains.


“Global urbanisation is the decisive driver of demand,” SCI says. “The number of cities and their average size are constantly increasing. Besides this, metro systems have constantly grown to be become the backbone of secure mobility.”

In 2016, 159 metro systems totalling 12,300 route-km were in operation worldwide compared with 152 in 2013, 107 in 2000, and only 84 in 1990. “The potential for the development of new metro systems is enormous and will remain so in the future,” SCI says. “Approximately 140 cities with more than 1 million inhabitants have no metro system. These metropolises are mainly located in Asia and Africa/Middle East.”

SCI expects a further 6600km of additional metro lines to be put into operation by 2022, and another 4400 km by 2026, which SCI attributes mainly to dynamic expansion plans in China and India.

According to SCI, CRRC Corporation, China, already has a world market share of almost 60%. “Between 2012 and 2016, CRRC dominated the world market for new metro vehicles,” SCI explains. “Besides continuing high deliveries in its home country China and its leading position in Asia, CRRC holds the Number 1 position in Eastern Europe and Africa/Middle East.”

SCI expects CRRC to continue to increase its market penetration outside China for two reasons: first, the Chinese market remains at a very high level, and secondly, CRRC is becoming increasingly active internationally. CRRC has large order backlogs from the United States and India, and new contracts in Turkey and countries in Africa and the Middle East.

SCI MetroVehicle market 2017

Global metro car market share by manufacture. © SCI Verkehr