Global demand to reach 11.2 bn metres by 2017 / 8.5% annual growth / Increase in construction spending plays key role / Freedonia study
US market research group Freedonia (Cleveland, Ohio; is projecting global demand in plastic pipes to climb 8.5% annually through 2017 reaching 11.2 bn metres by then. This marks a significant improvement over growth posted between 2007 and 2012 and more than a full percentage point better than past research indicated for roughly the same timeframe – see of 10.06.2011. North America and Asia/Pacific will see above average growth of around 9.8% respectively 9.7%. In Western Europe, the researchers expect the lowest growth rate – around 5% by 2017.

The group’s latest study, "World Plastic Pipe", suggests that advances will come primarily due to increased construction spending in all global regions as plastic pipes are most heavily utilised in construction applications. The study supports its strong growth spurt by looking at two critical regions: recovery in the US construction industry resulting in nearly double-digit gains in pipe demands, and China, which should continue to maintain the world’s largest construction market.

Another important trend shows plastic pipe gaining market share as it continues to replace other materials, such as copper, concrete, and steel, due to its low cost, installation ease, and performance advantages.

PVC is extensively the most widely used pipe resin, having accounted for more than 55% of global plastic pipe demand in 2012 accounting for 7.5 bn metres. However, going forward, HDPE is expected to take market share from PVC in a variety of construction applications. As PEX becomes increasingly common in many regional markets, the material will supplant PVC potable water distribution pipe, notes the Cleveland-based company’s research.

Additionally, fibreglass, where demand has historically been limited due to its high pricetag, is also beginning to be utilised in a wider array of water and wastewater settings, which the study attributes to its performance benefits.

Research findings also focus on another important trend: Demand gains in terms of weight will benefit from plastic’s increased use in larger diameter pipe. The majority of large-diameter plastic pipe is used in infrastructure applications, such as potable water transmission and sewer and drainage networks. In many developed countries, a decaying infrastructure will boost gains. As sewer and water transmission systems are replaced, many countries will look to plastic pipe because of its lower cost and installation ease. In developing nations, investment in local water and wastewater infrastructure will also play a role in stimulating demand.
01.05.2013 [225210-0]
Published on 01.05.2013
Kunststoffrohre: Weltweiter Bedarf steigt jährlich um 8,5 ProzentGerman version of this article...

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