Global Polymers Market size is forecast to reach around $750 billion by 2025, after growing at a CAGR of 5.1% during 2020-2025. Polymer is one of the widely used chemical products in almost all the sectors such a medical, aerospace, packaging, automotive, construction, electrical appliances, and medical sector, and consequently, the global polymers market is thriving. Polymers are used widely as a substitute of metal and mineral based products due to its high performance, cost-effectiveness, and low weight. Increase in the retail sector and prospering e-commerce industry is demanding for more packaging material that is influencing the significance of the polymers market. Whereas, the growing interest in renewable feedstock and biopolymers among the consumers have led to the development of several alternatives to traditional plastics that in turn drives the demand for Polymer during the forecast period. Furthermore, growing demand for polymer in the electronic industry for the manufacturing of different electrical parts such as switches and sockets are driving the Polymers Market.
Global Polymers Market Segment Analysis – By Type
The Polyethylene segment is projected to witness the highest CAGR of 7.1% during the forecast period owing to the rising demand from various end-use industry. Whereas, growing uses of high-density polyethylene (HDPE) and Low-density polyethylene (LDPE) in food and beverage packaging like milk and fruit juices, crates, caps for food packaging, drums, and other liquid food packaging and industrial packaging applications drive the market growth. Construction industry is a major consumer of polyethylene which is used in the form of sheets, plates, films, foils, and strips that offer plastic protection to floors. Furthermore, polyethylene is also used in pipes and fittings which form an integral part of various industrial activities. Besides, consumer goods such as bowls, buckets, water bottles, drums, dustbins and plumbing pipes, are a few polyethylene products utilized on a daily basis. Increased sales of consumer goods offer opportunities to vendors in the polyethylene market, which in turn drive the growth of this market.
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Global Polymers Market Segment Analysis – By Process
The injection molding segment is projected to witness the highest CAGR of 6.8% during the forecast period owing to its optical clarity and biocompatibility characteristics. In the injection molding process, large polymer moldings can be inexpensively manufactured in large quantities for direct usage. Furthermore, the growing complexity of technical biodegradable polymer/bioplastic moldings drives the demand for a multi-component injection molding process, which in turn propels the growth of this segment. Whereas, the growing demand for plastic components across numerous end-use industries like automotive, packaging, home appliances, electrical and electronics, and healthcare devices is expected to drive the market growth. Besides, various industries are shifting their focus towards injection-molded products in order to enhance their operations and produce products with better quality as per the customer’s requirements. For instance, the automotive industry is replacing steel with plastics to reduce a vehicle’s weight and improve fuel efficiency.
Global Polymers Market Segment Analysis – By End-Use Industry
The medical/healthcare segment is projected to witness the exponential growth in the global Polymers Market during the forecast period and a negative demand impact is expected to continue into 2021. This growth is attributed to the outbreak of COVID-19 and the exponential demand for Ventilators, masks, and personal protective equipment (PPE) globally. Whereas, the properties of polymers like versatility, sterile nature, safety for patients and providers, cost effectiveness, and ease of use makes the use of polymers for various medicals application such as disposable medical devices, including flexible fluid bags, tubing, oxygen, masks, surgical gloves, and face shields. Whereas, due to COVID-19 outbreak, at presently, plastics have revolutionized the medical industry and represent the largest group of materials used in medical technology.
Global Polymers Market Segment Analysis – By Geography
Among the regions, the APAC region hold the largest share of more than 45% in 2019 and is projected to witness the highest CAGR of around 7.9% in the global Polymers Market followed by North America and Europe during the forecast period. The growing economies of South East Asian countries, growing disposable income, easy availability of raw materials used to manufacture plastics, and rise in population propels the growth of this market in the APAC region. Furthermore, the growing demand for eco-friendly alternatives for traditional plastics from emerging nations like China and India and increased consumption of petrochemicals and plastics primarily used for packaging in F&B industries further drives the growth of this market across the country during the forecast period.
Polymers Market Drivers
Rising demand of Polymer across various end-use industries
Polymer has many useful properties which make it suitable for various end-use industry applications. It has low strength and hardness, but is very ductile and has good impact strength; it will stretch rather than break. Polymer based products has a good electric insulator, offering electric treeing resistance but can become electrostatically charged. Hence, owing to these properties the demand for Polymer is gaining momentum in various industries such as automotive, electrical and electronics, food and beverage, and consumer goods. The growing demand further projects the Polymers Market in good light and ensures its prospects in the coming years. In the automotive industry, manufactures are focusing on increasing the efficiency of vehicles by reducing the weight of the vehicles. Polymer material is preferred as it is light in weight, offers easy processability, sealing and stiffness properties. In the food and beverage industry, consumption for Polymer is growing at a rapid pace due to the rising demand from production of packaging materials for food and beverage. The manufactures prefer effective packaging to reduce the possibility of food contamination and loss of quality. The use of Polymer in fashion, sports, and toys is growing due to its ability to resist physical stresses, durability, provide flexibility in packaging, and allow easy molding of products. In the agriculture industry, the application of Polymer is growing owing to increasing demand for drippers, micro tubes, nozzles, and emitting pipes at irrigation fields. Therefore, an increase in the application of Polymer automotive, electrical and electronics, food and beverage, and consumer goods industries is propelling the Polymers Market share.
Increasing demand for bio-based polymers
Bio-based plastics are made in whole or partially from renewable biological resources. For example, sugar cane is processed to produce ethylene, which can then be used to manufacture polyethylene. Starch can be processed to produce lactic acid and subsequently polylactic acid (PLA). Bio-based polymer is perfect to reduce the number of carbon emissions they create in the world, lower their overall energy consumption and protect the environment. So, many companies are now looking towards this fantastic plastic-alternative because it ends up being a win-win for both the consumer and for packaging companies. Additionally, it’s crucial to understand that bio-based plastics like bio-based polyethylene contains renewable carbon elements. This is one of the main reasons many manufacturers are making the switch to bio-based and not fossil-fuel based plastics. At the end of a bio-based plastic’s life cycle, it will return to the atmosphere, but will not add any elements of new carbon to the environment.
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Polymers Market Challenges
Harmful effects of plastics on the environment
Plastics are lightweight, durable, and corrosion-resistant with high thermal and electrical insulation properties that can be used across various residential, commercial, and industrial applications. Furthermore, plastic products are inexpensive as compared to other metal products. Hence, form the last two decades the use of traditional plastic is growing worldwide. However, plastic is non-decomposable due to the presence of various harmful chemical ingredients in the plastic that limiting its use across various end-use applications. In addition, the presence of harmful chemicals has their negative impact on the environment, living organisms, and human health. Presently, the use of micro plastic becomes a bigger threat to plants and animals including humans who are based on land. For instance, in 2019, according to the Center for International Environmental Law (CIEL) report, the production, and incineration of plastic added more than 850 million metric tons of greenhouse gases to the atmosphere. Thus, the growing environmental concern is resulting in more stringent regulations, which is hinder market growth. Whereas, Governments all over the world have taken action to ban the plastic. For instance, in 2016, in France, the country passed a ‘Plastic Ban’ law. The law aims at cutting the usage of plastic bags in the country by half by 2025.
Emergence of COVID-19 the Pandemic
The emergence of COVID-19, which is declared a pandemic by the World Health Organization, is having a noticeable impact on global economic growth. According to International Monetary Fund, the global GDP is expected to decline by 0.3% in 2020. According to World Trade Organization (WTO), global trade volumes are projected to decline between 13% and 32% in 2020 as a result of the economic impact of COVID-19. The pandemic is affecting operations of various industries such as automotive, oil and gas, construction, aerospace, and others, as most of countries have issued “stay at home guidance”. Moreover, it is expected that the outbreak of COVID-19 will be seen in the whole year of 2020, and a few months in 2021. As, polymer products are extensively used in these industries, the declining operations of these industries is directly affecting Polymers Market growth.
Technology launches, acquisitions, and R&D activities are key strategies adopted by players in the Polymers Market report. In 2019, the market of Polymer top 10 companies accounting for xx% of the share. Major players in the Polymers Market industry the outlook is The Dow Chemical Company, LyondellBasell Industries N.V., Exxon Mobil Corporation, SABIC, BASF SE, INEOS AG, Eni S.p.A., Chevron Phillips Chemical Company LLC, and LANXESS, among others.
In August 2018, LyondellBasell completed acquisition of A. Schulman, Inc., a global supplier of highperformance plastic compounds including polyethylene. The acquisition will help LyondellBasell to increase their share in the plastic and polyethylene market and capitalize on the increasing demand from the packaging industry.
In the Latin America region, in 2019, Brazil is the major market for the Polymer owing to a rise in the purchasing power of consumers, growing consumer packaged goods market, and rise in corn, wheat, and sugarcane production and consumption across the country owing to the Bio-based plastic and polymers are gaining prominent growth.
The polymers are observed to be the better substitutes than glass, and metals that is leveraging the polymers market. The increasing demand for specialty polymers are fueling the growth of the polymers market.
Progression in 3D printing is improving the growth aspects of polymers and plastic manufacturing. The changing preference of consumers from metal 3D printing to plastic material 3D printing is leading to substantial growth in the polymers market.
Fluctuation in international oil prices tend to force companies to search for an alternative stable source of the raw material for packaging, which further provides lucrative opportunities for the growth of Polymer industry.
Evolution of the natural and environment-friendly polymers in the packaging sector for food packaging, cosmetics packaging and pharmaceutical packaging is driving the growth.
Comparatively lower awareness about biodegradable polymer in emerging nations like India, Thailand, South Africa and Qatar are hampering the market growth.
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