Socio-economic developments

Population growth

An estimated 60% of the current global population, equivalent to more than 4 billion people, require some form of vision correction. As populations continue to expand, so does the addressable global market for eyewear. Growth projections vary per region, with higher predicted rates in Latin America and Asia compared to Europe and North America.


Older people are more prone to visual disorders and have greater requirements for vision correction and for more complex solutions such as multi-focal lenses. The global portion of over-60 year olds is expected to increase two to three times faster than the rate of the general population until 2030. This is particularly true for Europe and North America, but also for emerging markets and highly populated countries such as China and India.


The penetration of eyesight correction remains lowest in emerging markets and presents a strong opportunity for eyewear providers, particularly in highly populated countries such as China and India. In the short–to-medium term, growth of the global eyewear market is expected to be strongly led by these markets as they also account for the majority of the global population.

Emerging middle class

The size of the eyewear market and its development is highly correlated to economic development. As economic activity and wealth increases in emerging markets such as Latin America and Asia, the intrinsic need for eyesight correction and eye protection translates into active consumer demand.