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Global plastic packaging market to reach $370 billion by 2020: report


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July 29, 2015 by Canadian Plastics

Driven by a rising demand for plastic packaging in the healthcare sector, the global plastic packaging market was valued at nearly US$260 billion in 2013 and is expected to reach US$370 billion by 2020, according to a new report from U.S.-based research firm Transparency Market Research.

In terms of volume, the plastic packaging market was worth 78,400.2 kilo tons in 2013, the study said, and the market is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5.2% over the forecast period between 2014 and 2020.

A rising demand for plastic packaging in the healthcare sector is expected to be one of the key drivers contributing to the growth of this market. Also, as the food and beverages market continues to expand, which is the largest application of plastic packaging, this, too, is expected to fuel growth. Demand for plastic packaging was highest in the food and beverages sector which received more than 65% of the market share in 2013, the report said. And as more and more regulations are being set in place regarding pharmaceutical packaging in regards to maintenance of hygiene, reduction of fraudulent drugs in the retail market and to retain the medicinal properties of the drug, this area is expected to witness the fastest growth from the medical application segment over the next few years.

The report also noted that research and development activities on plastic packaging technologies have opened up opportunities for the usage of nanotechnology in the formation of films and printing.

Polyethylene is still the lowest cost and most widely-used plastic film for food packaging across the globe, the report said. Polypropylene is also becoming a big contender in the plastic packaging market. Bioplastics is expected to become more in demand and open up growth avenues in the plastic packaging industry.

The report also noted potential downsides for the plastic packaging market, chief among them the volatility in prices of crude oil which consequently affects the prices of its downstream chemicals.

Asia Pacific accounted for the highest demand for plastic packaging in 2013, which was over 35% of the market share. This trend is expected to continue over the forecast period on account of rapid economic development in this region resulting in the growth of industries such as food and beverages, personal care products and pharmaceuticals among others.