Plastics have proven to provide an alternative solution to metals in numerous industrial and non-industrial applications such as automotive manufacturing, mechanical fasteners, medical equipment, commercial furniture. But did you know that plastic additives are the reason behind the popularity and widespread use of plastics? Let us begin by first defining plastic additives.
Plastics additives are chemicals that are used to polymerize, modify or process end use properties of different types of plastics. The objective is to improve the properties and enhance the performance of plastics. With the help of additives, plastics can be made safer, tougher, and cleaner. They help significantly in reducing the production costs and make the end product last longer.
Let us look at the different types of plastic additives:
The global plastic additives market is predicted to grow at a CAGR of 3.8% and is anticipated to reach $50 billion by 2020. Due to the abundance of raw materials, India and China are the leading markets. The plasticizer market is valued at $21.4 billion and is the largest growing revenue generating segment. This is followed by the flame retardant market which is expected to grow at a CAGR of 5.4% through 2020. In addition, the antimicrobial segment is anticipated to grow at an exponential rate due to increasing demands for plastic products in the healthcare sector.
Asia-Pacific regions have been the global leader in terms of volume, value, production, and consumption. The key sectors behind this surge are the automobile and infrastructure industry. The Indian and Chinese automobile industry is anticipated to grow at a CAGR of 14% through 2020.
Plastic additive manufacturers are now focusing on setting up industries at Asia-Pacific regions. Reason being, Asia-Pacific regions have accounted for around 40% revenue of the plastic additives market as of 2013, and is predicted to increase to 60% by 2020. Furthermore, increasing awareness towards the conservation of natural resources is another reason behind the growth of the plastic additives market in the region.