Table of Contents
World demand to rise 6.5% annually through 2019
Worldwide demand for plastic pipe is projected to grow 6.5 percent per annum through 2019 to 20.6 billion meters. Strong construction activity, particularly in the large markets of China and the US, will boost plastic pipe demand, as plastic pipe sees intensive use in both building and nonbuilding applications. Plastic’s performance, cost, and installation advantages will also spur increasing use of plastic over competing pipe materials such as concrete, copper, and steel.
Construction to remain key market
Construction applications make up the largest share of plastic pipe demand and will support growth through the forecast period. Although construction spending will decelerate in China, the world’s largest plastic pipe market, plastic pipe demand in the country will still rise about nine percent annually through 2019. A continuing recovery in construction spending and housing completions will support rapid advances for plastic pipe demand in the US.
Water pipe to drive gains in developing countries
Growth in plastic pipe demand will also be robust in many developing countries. Efforts to expand access to potable water and sewage systems will boost plastic pipe demand in Africa, Asia, and South America. The market opportunity for these utilities is large; in many areas of the world, a large share of the population does not have reliable access to drinking water supply or improved sanitation. The comparatively low cost and ease of installation of plastic pipe will provide it advantages over other pipe materials in these regions.
Plastic pipe to increase share in underused markets
The energy, manufacturing, and agriculture sectors tend to be less intensive users of plastic pipe than the construction market. However, improvements in technology and plastic resins have helped plastic pipe increase its share in many of these markets. For example, in most oil and gas applications, plastic accounts for only a small share of the total pipe market, but increasing use of some materials, such as fiberglass in oil pipelines and HDPE in natural gas distribution, will support global plastic pipe demand going forward.
HDPE, PVC to be fastest growing pipe resins
PVC is the leading resin used in plastic pipe. PVC pipe demand is projected to accelerate through 2019, reaching 30.3 million metric tons on 6.7 percent annual advances. Growth will be supported by improving construction expenditures. However, HDPE has registered stronger growth over the past decade due to its increasing use in the energy market, as well as the growing use of PEX (crosslinked polyethylene) pipe in potable water distribution applications. Through 2019, HDPE demand is projected to rise 7.2 percent per annum to 17.5 million metric tons. While other resins have seen greater usage in some markets, including energy and building construction, their share of the global market will remain small.
This upcoming industry study, World Plastic Pipe, presents historical demand data (2004, 2009 and 2014) plus forecasts (2019 and 2024) by market and resin for six world regions and 24 countries. The study also considers market environment factors, evaluates company market share and profiles 31 global industry competitors such as Mexichem (Mexico), JM Eagle (US), China Lesso, Aliaxis (Belgium), Sekisui Chemical (Japan), Future Pipe (United Arab Emirates), and Formosa Plastics (Taiwan).
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