Oil and gas edged past technology and communication to emerge as the top sector in the Forbes 2019 list of world’s largest public companies, with a 16.2 per cent year-on-year (YoY) growth in revenue generation.
The figures were published by leading data and analytics company, GlobalData, who analysed the YoY change in sales and profits of the top 10 sectors by sales and the geographical spread of Forbes Global 2000 largest public companies and normalised into appropriate sectors.
Company Profiles Analyst at GlobalData, Parth Vala, said the Declaration of Cooperation between OPEC member countries and 11 non-OPEC oil-producing countries on 30 November 2017 for voluntary production adjustments to about 1.8 million barrels per day during 2018 had a positive impact on the oil and gas sector.
The construction sector also witnessed sales growth due to large-scale investment in infrastructure projects, increased demand for housing and government initiatives to invest and expand road, rail and airport infrastructure projects in China. Pharmaceuticals and healthcare, and insurance were the two sectors in the top 10 list to report sales decline.
Oil and gas was the major gainer with a profit growth rate of 36.3 per cent, followed by technology and communication (19.8 per cent), metals and mining (13.6 per cent), banking (12.6 per cent) and pharmaceuticals and healthcare (11.8 per cent).
In terms of geographical spread, the Asia-Pacific (APAC) region continued to dominate the Forbes Global 2000 with 790 companies including China (251) and Japan (223), followed by North America (631) including the US (575), Europe (457), the Middle East and Africa (67), and South and Central America (55).
APAC reported the highest sales growth of 8.2 per cent, followed by the Middle East and Africa (7.5 per cent), North America (5.7 per cent) and Europe (2 per cent).
The sales growth in APAC was supported by rapid urbanisation, stable economic growth, structural reforms and increasing millennials.
The Middle East and Africa reported the highest profit growth of 60.4 per cent on the back of strong performance of the oil and gas sector, followed by South and Central America (47.1 per cent).