Increased Activity in the Mining Sector Supports Steady Growth of the Southern African PPE Market, Finds Frost & Sullivan

Published: 6 Apr 2011

Awareness on Workplace Safety to Drive Market to $818.1 Million by 2016

CAPE TOWN - 6 April 2011 - The Southern African personal protective equipment (PPE) market has not yet matured due to the slack implementation of legislation related to its proper usage in the workplace. However, enhanced awareness about safety in the mining and manufacturing sectors will drive the expansion of the PPE market in Southern Africa.

New analysis from Frost & Sullivan (, Southern African PPE Market, finds that the market earned revenues of $613.5 million in 2009 and estimates this to reach $818.1 million in 2016. Heightened awareness about safety in the workplace will boost demand for PPE. Among the countries included in the research are South Africa, Zambia, Zimbabwe, Namibia and Angola. The following product segments are covered in this research: eye, hearing, face and head protection; protective gloves; respiratory PPE; foot protection; and protective clothing.

"Greater awareness about health and safety in the workplace is the main driver of the Southern African PPE market," notes Frost & Sullivan Chemical, Materials and Food Research Analyst Dilshaad Booley. "This has led to a reduction in the number of incidents in the workplace, supporting increased production."

Although there are no consistent site visits to ensure the correct and permanent use of PPE, when these random checks are conducted, companies face fines and possible closure. This is encouraging the expanded and proper use of PPE in the workplace.

The focus on workplace safety is intensifying worldwide, compelling multinationals and larger companies in the mining and industrial sectors to adhere to these practices. As awareness grows, smaller, local companies are also ensuring proper deployment of PPE for their employees.

Most PPE is imported and, as a result, faces unstable exchange rates. The presence of cheaper imports also adds to the challenges facing market participants. This situation enables end users to have greater bargaining power, intensify price pressures on market participants and cause profit margins to be squeezed.

"A major challenge, apart from the inconsistent implementation of legislation on PPE use, is the presence of cheaper, lower-graded imports," explains Booley. "Most local companies tend to choose cheaper PPE products, irrespective of their quality, over more expensive, better-quality products."

Providing end-user markets and their employees with the relevant training on workplace safety will boost demand for PPE. Market participants should highlight the importance of correct and permanent use of good-quality PPE in the workplace by raising awareness about their benefits.

"PPE manufacturers need to offer extra services to their customers, such as providing training and advice on the best PPE available," says Booley. "Demonstrations and workshops aimed at educating end users will also help expand the client base and boost revenues."

If you are interested in more information on this study, please send an e-mail with your contact details to Christie Cronje, Corporate Communications, at

Southern African PPE Market is part of the Chemicals & Materials Growth Partnership Services programme, which also includes research in the following markets: Overview of the Angolan Chemicals Market, Sub-Saharan African Mining Chemicals Market and Opportunities within the South African Titanium Dioxide Market. All research services included in subscriptions provide detailed market opportunities and industry trends that have been evaluated following extensive interviews with market participants.

About Frost & Sullivan

Frost & Sullivan, the Growth Partnership Company, enables clients to accelerate growth and achieve best-in-class positions in growth, innovation and leadership. The company's Growth Partnership Service provides the CEO and the CEO's Growth Team with disciplined research and best-practice models to drive the generation, evaluation, and implementation of powerful growth strategies. Frost & Sullivan leverages 50 years of experience in partnering with Global 1000 companies, emerging businesses and the investment community from more than 40 offices on six continents. To join our Growth Partnership, please visit

Southern African PPE Market


Christie Cronje
Corporate Communications – Africa
P: +27 21 680 3566

Help Desk

Full list of offices

For more information and general enquiries, contact Frost & Sullivan near you.

North America
tel: +1.877.463.7678

Select a location near you..