The global plastic market is expected to grow at a CAGR of around 4.3% from 2020 to 2027 and expected to reach the market value of around US$ 580.0 Bn by 2027.
Plastics are a fast-growing component of municipal solid waste (MSW). While plastics can be found in all major MSW categories, containers and packaging had the most plastic tonnage in 2018, with over 14.5 million tonnes. Bags, sacks, and wraps; other packaging; polyethylene terephthalate (PET) bottles and jars; high-density polyethylene (HDPE) natural bottles; and other items are included in this category. Nondurable products containing plastics include disposable diapers, trash bags, cups, utensils, medical devices, and household items such as shower curtains. Plastic food service items are typically made of clear or foamed polystyrene, whereas trash bags are made of either high-density polyethylene (HDPE) or low-density polyethylene (LDPE). According to the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), plastics generation in the United States was 35.7 million tones in 2018, accounting for 12.2% of MSW generation. The EPA measured plastic recycling using data from the American Chemistry Council and the National Association for PET Container Resources. While the overall amount of recycled plastics is small-three million tones for an 8.7 percent recycling rate in 2018-recycling of certain types of plastic containers is more significant.
Plastic production encompasses numerous problems; is chemical recycling the solution?
According to the American Chemical Society report, the projects show that the plastics industry is betting big on chemical recycling as it faces mounting pressure to do something about plastic waste. Coca-Cola, PepsiCo, and Unilever have made ambitious commitments to incorporate recycled material into their packaging, up to 50% in some cases. Governments are attempting to prohibit the use of single-use plastics such as straws while also mandating a greater use of recycled content. Plastics manufacturers are eager to experiment with chemical recycling, and dozens of start-ups are ready to assist them. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, the United States recycled only 9.1% of the 31 million t of plastics discarded by consumers in 2015. The vast majority were disposed of in landfills or incinerators. In comparison, that year, two-thirds of paper, one-third of metals, and one-quarter of glass were recycled. According to the European Commission, approximately 14.8% of the approximately 27 million t of plastic waste generated in the European Union in 2016 was recycled. While chemical recycling appeals to manufacturers, it should ideally provide environmental benefits in addition to waste reduction.
Stringent regulations imposed by the government for recyclability of materials is expected to drive the plastics market globally
Glass, steel, aluminum, and paper have all been recycled for food-contact use in the past. Contamination from post-consumer use has not been a major issue with these materials. Aluminum beverage containers, on average, contain 70% recycled material, the highest percentage of recycled content of any beverage container type. In contrast, glass containers are recycled up to 74% of the time in the EU. Today, industrial packaging is the most important sector that uses plastic. This is why the world's major economies, including the United States, the European Union, and others, have prioritized the development of guidelines to ensure that products made from recycled plastic are suitable for use in packaging and food packaging. Manufacturers of recycled plastic articles in the United States are responsible for ensuring that the recycled material is of suitable purity for its intended use and meets all existing specifications for the use of virgin plastic. These requirements are found in Title 21 of the Code of Federal Regulations, and suggestions for using recycled plastic in product packaging can be found in the Guidance for Industry - Use of Recycled Plastics in Food Packaging. Furthermore, in the EU, Regulation No 282/2008 states that “only food-contact materials and articles containing recycled plastic obtained from an authorized recycling process may be marketed in the EU after petitions for recycling processes are evaluated”. After receiving a petition, the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) issues an opinion on the process's safety, and the European Commission decides whether or not to accept the recycling process.
High cost involved for recycling process impedes the plastics market to grow worldwide
Currently, there are numerous inefficiencies in the global market. Unfortunately, unlike glass, aluminum, or paper, plastic is much more difficult to recycle. The majority of plastic eventually ends up in a landfill or incinerator. Despite efforts to promote plastic recycling, plastic production has outpaced recycling by a factor of five over the last decade. While increased plastic recycling is one solution, it has limited potential to reduce the glut of plastic waste. Most types of plastic can be recycled, but a lack of infrastructure prevents all but the most common types of plastic from being recycled. To make recycling work, communities must be able to collect and sort plastic at a low cost, and businesses must be willing to accept the material for processing. Collection is costly because plastic bottles are light but bulky, making it difficult to efficiently collect large amounts of matching plastic. Only a few types of plastic have the supply and market conditions that allow for recycling.
The global plastics market is segmented as product, application, and end-user. By product, the market is segmented as Polyethylene (PE), Polypropylene (PP), Polyurethane (PU), Polyvinyl chloride (PVC), Polyethylene terephthalate (PET), Polystyrene (PS), Acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS), Polybutylene terephthalate (PBT), Polyphenylene Oxide (PPO), Epoxy Polymers, Liquid Crystal Polymers, Polyether ether ketone (PEEK), Polycarbonate (PC), Polyamide (PA), Polysulfone (PSU), polyphenylsulfone (PPSU), and Others. Based on application, the market is segmented as injection molding, blow molding, roto molding, compression molding, casting, thermoforming, extrusion, calendering, and others. Based on end-user, the market is segregated as packaging, construction, electrical & electronics, automotive, medical devices, agriculture, furniture & bedding, consumer goods, utility, and others
Asia Pacific will dominate the global plastics market in the forecast period
The Asia Pacific region is expected to have a dominant market share in the global plastics market. Plastic demand in the automotive, construction, packaging, and electrical and electronics industries is expected to rise as the manufacturing sector expands. In recent years, India and China have seen an increase in automotive production as a result of technology transfer from Western markets.
The prominent players of the global plastics market involve BASF SE, Saudi Basic Industries Corporation (SABIC), Dow Inc., DuPont de Nemours, Inc., Evonik Industries AG, Sumitomo Chemical Co., Ltd., Arkema S.A., and among others
Market By Product
Polyvinyl chloride (PVC)
Polyethylene terephthalate (PET)
Acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS)
Polybutylene terephthalate (PBT)
Polyphenylene Oxide (PPO)
Liquid Crystal Polymers
Polyether ether ketone (PEEK)
Market By Application
Market By End-use
Electrical & Electronics
Furniture & Bedding
Market By Geography
• Rest of Europe
• South Korea
• Rest of Asia-Pacific
• Rest of Latin America
Middle East & Africa
• South Africa
• Rest of Middle East & Africa
Plastics market is expected to reach a market value of around US$ 580.0 Bn by 2027.
The plastics market is expected to grow at a CAGR of around 4.3% from 2020 to 2027.
Based on product, polyethylene (PE) segment is the leading segment in the overall market.
Rising adoption of recycling technique is one of the prominent factors that drive the demand for plastics market.
BASF SE, Saudi Basic Industries Corporation (SABIC), Dow Inc., DuPont de Nemours, Inc., Evonik Industries AG, Sumitomo Chemical Co., Ltd., Arkema S.A., and among others.
Asia Pacific is anticipated to grab the highest market share in the regional market
North America is expected to be the fastest growing market in the forthcoming years