LONDON: Worldwide adspend is forecast to record strong year-on-year growth of 5% in 2015, itself an improvement on the 4.8% growth expected in 2014, the latest industry predictions from Carat, the global media network, has stated.

Growth of 4.8% this year would equate to $551bn of global adspend and represent an upward revision on the 4.5% forecast in Carat's previous global advertising expenditure forecast in September 2013.

Its analysis is based on data received from 59 markets across the Americas, Asia-Pacific and EMEA and it said all regions, even Western Europe, are expected to see increased adspend driven primarily by digital media.

Carat expressed confidence that the era of double digit decline in some parts of Western Europe may now be at an end and revealed that some European markets will perform particularly strongly in 2014.

The UK, for example, is expected to record growth of 5% this year, which stands well when compared to the 4.3% growth forecast for the US, 3.8% growth in Canada, 2.3% in Spain and 2.1% in Australia.

Italy, however, will continue to remain in the doldrums this year with adspend declining 1.3% – although this, too, is a big improvement on the -10.3% the country posted in 2013.

Looking at the regions as a whole, North America is forecast to grow 4.3% this year, Western Europe by 1.8%, Central and Eastern Europe by 5%, Asia-Pacific by 5.6% and Latin America by an impressive 12.8%.

Digital spend continues its upwards trajectory and is forecast to record a global growth rate of 15.5% in 2014, making it the only media predicted to increase market share this year.

It is already the number one media type in the UK, Denmark, the Netherlands, Norway and Sweden, the report added.

Jerry Buhlmann, CEO of Dentsu Aegis Network, said: "With 2014 looking brighter than we previously anticipated, and further momentum gathering in 2015, the outlook for advertising expenditure is healthy for most.

"The real story of the advertising market is the dynamics in digital media. Digital growth accounts for three times total growth and the seismic trends within digital are causing a convergent media revolution."

Warc's Consensus Ad Forecast put the growth in global adspend at 5.2% for 2014, with the highest rates seen in China (+11.2%), India (+11%) and Russia (+10.7%). Projected growth in US adspend stood at 4.0% for 2014, while the UK adspend market is expected to grow 5.4%.

Data sourced from Carat; additional content by Warc staff