They can be made flexible or rigid, hard or soft, and resistant to various substances. Plastics are inexpensive to make and use relative to most other materials, but so many different kinds of plastics and uses can be prohibitive when recycling. There are instances when the recycling of plastics is profitable, but there are also cases in which the cost to collect, separate, clean and reuse plastic products significantly outweighs the economic and environmental benefits of doing so.
Aside from economic considerations, recycling is influenced by public sentiment. Developed countries increasingly view industrial activity through the lens of sustainable development. One result can be subsidies for recycling. Consumers often pay more for the collection and processing of material for recycling than they would for land disposal or incineration. Using recycled content in products and making products that are easier to recycle are two measures manufacturers take to be more “environmentally friendly.” The magnitude of this influence on markets is difficult to predict. Clearly, the public would like to take measures that conserve natural resources and minimize the environmental impact of the products they use, but the price they are willing to pay to do so remains unclear. In recent years, developing countries such as China set ambitious targets for plastics recycling.
The U.S. has largely taken a free market approach, but Europe has not. Europe’s laws concerning recycling rates and restrictions on the use of certain substances are much more stringent than those in the U.S. Many insightful applications and technologies have come from the high levels of recycling practiced in some European countries. In the Asia-Pacific region, China, India, Vietnam and Indonesia lead the plastics recycling business. Mexico, South Africa, Australia and Brazil also have considerable market sizes.
The goal of this study is to provide information regarding the current state of global recycled polyethylene terephthalate (rPET), as well as to speculate where it is headed and why. This is accomplished by describing current markets, the items being recycled, the entities doing it, the quantities and the regions in which recycled materials are being used in new products. Factors that influence recycling, such as new technologies and legislation, are also discussed. Waste products from commercial sources (e.g., packaging and shipping films) are included.
Recycling of industrial scrap is not covered in this report. Wastes generated during production, including off-spec resin, have a different set of problems associated with their recovery. These materials tend to be more uniform than post-consumer scrap, and they have a lower level of contamination.
Read on to discover the potential business opportunities available.
Europe will process a total of 5.1 billion pounds more post-consumer plastics by 2025 than in 2019. In Europe, there is a trend that virgin resin producers moving into recycling business. This is European companies’ response to the environmental pressures from increasing recycling rate, especially after China’s import ban. Their efforts will help drive the European market to grow at a CAGR of 6.3% in the next five years, much faster than the virgin resin industry in Europe.
The Netherlands-based LyondellBasell is one that has taken this move. In July 2018, the company announced a cooperation project with the Germany-based Karlsruhe Institute of Technology to advance the chemical recycling of post-consumer plastics. The focus is to develop a new catalyst and process technology to decompose post-consumer plastics into monomers for reuse in polymerization. In early 2018 LyondellBasell entered the recycling business for the first time by setting up a 50:50 joint venture with Suez. The joint venture, called Quality Circular Polymers, aims to developing high-quality recycled polyolefins from the mechanical recycling of sorted post-consumer plastics.
Another large European resin and chemical maker Borealis announced in July 2018 it was purchasedby Austrian PE recycling company Kunststoffrecycling, which processes approximately 28,000 metric tons of post-consumer plastics a year into high-quality LDPE and HDPE recyclates.
The Bangkok-headquartered Indorama Ventures Public Co. Ltd. (IVL), a global chemical and plastics producer, favored the European recycling business even earlier. In 2011, IVL acquired Wellman France Recyclage SAS, one of Europe’s largest PET recyclers. Being optimistic about the European plastics recycling business, IVL acquired Sorepla in August 2018, another big European PET and HDPE recycling company.
India will increase post-consumer plastics processing by more than 3 billion pound per year by 2025 from the 2019 level, which provide a great opportunity to the industry. In 2017, MBA Polymers entered the Indian market and signed agreements with several Indian waste management companies for setting up new production unit targeting initially a capacity of 50,000 tons of plastic waste per year. MBA Polymers India aims to supplying the Indian market with recycled ABS, PP and HIPS.
There will be no big room for big processors to set up new facilities in China due to the shortage of raw materials. The good news is that China’s demand for recycled resin pellets is still high, and many small-size Chinese recyclers and being cracking down. Therefore, large recycling companies may have a less competition, while the price of recycled pellets is very likely to remain high. China will also buy much more recycled resin pellets, mainly from the big scrap exporters in the past, such as Japan, Germany and the U.S.
Visiongain’s global recycled polyethylene terephthalate market report can keep you informed and up to date with the developments in the market, across four different regions: North America, Europe, Asia Pacific and Rest of the World.
With reference to this report, it details the key investments trend in the global market, subdivided by regions, capital and operational expenditure and project type. Through extensive secondary research and interviews with industry experts, Visiongain has identified a series of market trends that will impact the recycled polyethylene terephthalate market over the forecast timeframe.
The global recycled polyethylene terephthalate market is broken down by four major regions: Asia-Pacific, Europe, North America and ROW. In this report, North America refers to the U.S. and Canada. The European Union (E.U.) takes the majority of the market of the European continent. The Asia-Pacific market is dominated by China and the Southeast Asia-Pacific countries. ROW includes countries in Latin America, Africa and Oceania.
The Asia-Pacific region held more than two-thirds of the global market in 2019. China alone held half of the global revenues. The Asia-Pacific region might face a significant decline in coming years, as China has imposed a ban on the import of plastic waste. Chinese consumers will use more virgin resins than recycled resins, but China’s recycling of domestically collected plastic waste will continue to grow. The markets in India, Indonesia, Vietnam, Malaysia and Thailand will grow as well. The growth will drive the Asia-Pacific region’s recycling volume to return to its 2017 level by 2021.
North America is the second-largest market, whereas Europe and ROW only had smaller market shares. Europe, North America and ROW will experience steady growth of plastics recycling through 2030. This will drive the global plastics recycling market to recover to its 2017 level by 2020.
In some cases, reclaimers convert waste plastics to flakes, pellets or fibers, and then sell them to manufacturers, who in turn use them to make products. Some companies that primarily identify themselves as recyclers convert wastes to recycled resins and then make finished products. Some companies that are considered manufacturers of recycled content products have acquired the capability to reclaim waste materials within their own operations. These manufacturers may purchase recycled resin and also convert materials themselves. Market values in the following table and figures are measured at the level of reclaimers selling processed pellets, flakes or fibers to end users; for those who recycle for their own use, the market values are measured at the level of similar recycled plastics sold in the market.