Cat sees reason for global equipment growth
CAT CEO Doug Oberhelman sees reason to be optimistic
Caterpillar CEO Doug Oberhelman is cautiously optimistic that recovery in the global equipment market will continue throughout 2014. Speaking at Conexpo, Mr Oberhelman said that the company was in the best possible position to make the most of steadily growing demand, with a host of improved machines and technologies on show.
“The North American market is showing the best growth signs in March that we’ve seen for four years,” he said.
“This year the market is stronger, housing is better and we see a very slow recovery being sustained throughout this year. The Middle East is doing very well and Africa is doing well. Europe is positive, though we’re not expecting major growth there. China is recovering, but again I would not expect China to see the big boom that we’ve been used to.
“Australia has seen growth in mining and Indonesia is another economy benefitting from mining activity. South America is holding up well too, we haven’t seen the same decline in South America that we’ve seen elsewhere. India seems to be waiting for the election later this year before anything can happen.
“Overall it is a mixed bag, but I want to be guardedly optimistic about growth, with North America leading the way.”
Looking forward, the successful introduction of Tier 4 Final emissions regulated engines will now free up R&D budgets at Caterpillar, allowing the company to put more emphasis on a range of technologies. These include power density, telematic prognosis and diagnostics, alternative fuels and Liquified Natural Gas (LNG).
“We’re about to free up our engineering resources from 15 years of Tier 2, 3 and 4 work. We now have a fabulous opportunity,” said Mr Oberhelman. “These are exciting times for Caterpillar.”