Polyethylene (PE) is a mixture of similar organic compounds and is the most common plastic available. It is primarily used in packaging (plastic bag, plastic films, geomembranes, and containers including bottles). Asia-Pacific was the fastest-growing polyethylene market and accounted for 43.2% of the total market revenue in 2012, in which China was the dominating country.
Major drivers for this industry are high barrier thin film which is replacing foil and metalized films, high clarity packaging, and active packaging which increase shelf life, destroy harmful bacteria, and enhance flavours. Growth in demand is increasing also due to the transition of the items previously packaged in rigid containers to high quality flexible packaging.
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High Density Polyethylene (HDPE) Market:
High density polyethylene (HDPE) is more opaque/ harder and can withstand higher temperatures. It is a highly versatile type of plastic. It has the highest market share amongst all types of polyethylene. The market in terms of revenue stood at $49,300.9 million in 2012, and is expected to grow at a CAGR of 10.0% to $85,195.3 million by 2018.
Due to its diverse applications, ranging from household goods, food packaging, cosmetics, bottles, and care products to technical parts and products for the construction industry, high density polyethylene remains the most widely-used polyethylene in the industry. The demand for HDPE is rising from other developing countries such as that of China, India, and Brazil.
The demand of this market is estimated to grow at a CAGR of 7.3% during the period 2009 to 2020. Asia-Pacific is expected to emerge as the leading region, with a demand of more than 60% of the global demand for HDPE.
Low Density Polyethylene (LDPE) Market:
Low density polyethylene is the first grade of polyethylene that was developed in 1935, and hence, it is the most mature form of polyethylene that finds application in plastics. It is also more transparent as compared to other types of polyethylene, such as high density polyethylene and linear low density polyethylene. This makes it preferable for use in applications which require high transparency and moderate strength such as film applications in food packaging.
The low density polyethylene market has been affected by the global economic downturn; hence, the demand for low density polyethylene is not as strong as it was in the past. Market growth of low density polyethylene is lower than the market growth of other grades of polyethylene.
The market, in terms of revenue, is expected to grow at a CAGR of 8.2% by 2018. Since global demand is approaching maturity stage, the growth will be lower than that in the past.
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