The GCC bottled water market was valued at USD 4,482.09 million in 2020, and it is projected to grow at a CAGR of 10.98% during the forecast period (2021-2026).
- The GCC bottled water market has witnessed significant growth due to the rising tourism industry. Moreover, the foodservice channels, such as hotels and restaurants, are increasing in the country. Therefore, in order to offer quality service to tourists, the region is also contributing to the high share of sales in the bottled water market, primarily from the still bottled water segment. - Furthermore, a major consumer shift is being observed in the GCC bottled water market, from most of the carbonated beverages, like cold drinks, to still bottled water solely due to its healthy positioning in the retail space driving the market growth. - Total volume and value sales of bottled water actually benefitted from the COVID-19 pandemic in 2020, and this category recorded growth. This was due to stockpiling and bulk buying of bottled water as the government enforced curfews and implemented periodic lockdowns in major cities, including Makkah and Madinah, in early March. However, the lockdown restrictions on the food service industry have been a major challenge for manufacturers, affecting demand in the short term.
Key Market Trends Scarce Water Resources Leading to Rising Dependency on Packaged Drinking Water
The most water-scarce region in the world is the Middle East & North Africa region (MENA), including GCC, where more than 60% of the population has little or no access to drinkable water. Over 70% of the region’s gross domestic product (GDP) is exposed to high or very high-water stress, which is extreme compared to the global average of 22%. According to the World Bank, the MENA region also has the greatest expected economic losses from climate-related water scarcity, estimated at 6–14% of GDP by 2050. This scarcity poses a significant threat to the region’s long-term socio-economic development. The deep scarcity of drinkable water has been an issue due to water scarcity and unavailability of treated water, which is leading to the high dependency on bottled water and packed form of drinking water across the GCC region.
Saudi Arabia Holds the Largest Market Share
The Saudi Arabian bottled water market witnessed significant growth, due to the rising tourism industry. Moreover, the foodservice channels, such as hotels and restaurants, are also increasing in the country. Therefore, to offer quality service to their tourists, they are also contributing to the high share of sales in the bottled water market. Additionally, Saudi Arabia is a large industry for bottled water as the consumers are becoming aware of the advantages of drinking bottled water rather than consuming tap water provided by the local bodies. The rising disposable income and the significant rise in the population rate is further expected to indirectly boost the demand for bottled water across the region. With a per capita consumption of more than 113.5 litres of water in 2015, Saudi Arabia had the ninth highest level of bottled water consumption in the world. Sales of bottled water reached 1,061.07 million EUR in 2015, dominating the soft drinks market. Saudi Arabia is the largest bottled water consumer in the Middle East.
Competitive Landscape Some of the major players in the GCC bottled water market are Nestle SA, Agthia Group, Masafi Inc., Pepsico Inc., and Danone SA among others. The leading players are consistently increasing their bottled water products in all packaged form, so it can be consumed in all situations. Due to the increased demand for bottled water in the country, companies are continually strategizing toward product expansion, which is likely to increase the production capacity. Additionally, this expansion may bring improvement in the final product, so the supply may remain in sync with the increasing demand
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Gross Domestic Product
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