The research study covers the present scenario and growth prospects of the global polycarbonate plastic market for 2017-2021. The market is segmented on applications (electrical and electronics, automotive, construction, and optical media), and geography (APAC, Europe, North America, and ROW).
The global polycarbonate plastic market will witness significant growth during the forecast period owing to increasing applications of polycarbonate plastic in the electrical and electronics, automotive, and many other end-user industries. Polycarbonate plastic is preferred over traditional materials such as glass, wood, and metal because of their superior chemical and abrasion resistance characteristics. In recent years, rapid growth is seen in the automotive industry due to the increase in the disposable income worldwide, especially in APAC. The demand is mainly driven by the rising production of passenger cars. Increasing industrialization in APAC is also contributing to the growth of the polycarbonate plastic market.
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Technavio chemicals and materials research analysts highlight the following three factors that are contributing to the growth of the global polycarbonate plastic market:
- Increasing popularity of thermoplastics against conventional materials
- High demand from emerging economies
- Strong demand from automotive industry
Increasing popularity of thermoplastics against conventional materials
Thermoplastics such as polycarbonate plastic are increasingly becoming a substitute for conventional materials such as metals, glass, and wood. The easy availability and cost benefit are increasingly making plastics an appropriate alternative to traditional materials, including glass, wood, stainless steel, and ceramics.
Ajay Adhikari, a lead plastic, polymers, and elastomers research analyst at Technavio, says, “Materials made of polycarbonate plastic are cheap and are tear, abrasion, and chemical resistant. Metal foils are substituted with static dissipating polycarbonate plastic. It is used in packaging sensitive electrical components. Ceramics are substituted with polycarbonate plastics in tableware, both disposable and non-disposable.”
High demand from emerging economies
Polycarbonate plastic has a huge market in APAC, due to high durability, lightweight, and innovative potential of the material. It is gaining importance in developing regions as there are ample of opportunities for polycarbonate plastic-based products in various end-use industries such as food and beverage, construction, and automotive. All these industries require polymer plastic for the production of various industry-specific products.
“Polycarbonate plastic is gaining high importance in emerging regions of APAC, the Middle East, Africa, and South America, with countries such as the US, Germany, China, South Korea, Japan, and other Asian economies leading the production of polycarbonate plastic. These regions held more than half of the global capacity of polycarbonate plastic in 2016,” adds Ajay.
Strong demand from automotive industry
An increase in demand from the automotive industry is a major driver contributing to the growth of the global polycarbonate plastic market. Polycarbonate plastic is progressively substituting standard glass and other conventional elastomers in automotive applications. The use of polycarbonate plastic in the automotive industry includes lighting applications (for cars, bus, truck, and motorcycles) such as headlamp bezels, headlamp lenses, and light housings.
The demand for polycarbonate plastic is increasing due to the high demand for lighting applications, which has high-temperature resistance along with impact resistance and excellent light transparency. Also, polycarbonate plastic is increasingly being used in several automotive applications such as car interior parts and thermoformed sheets for cladding of railway cabins.
- Asahi Kasei
- Chi Mei
- LG Chem
- Samsung SDI
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