AMI Issues Report on Polyethylene Film

BRISTOL, UK | Applied Market Information (AMI) reports the polyethylene film industry in Europe has continued to grow at a steady rate over recent years. Despite trends to use more linear and metallocene materials enabling film producers to make thinner films, the volume demand has continued to rise to reach over 7.4 million tonnes of PE materials consumed for film extrusion in 2016, a 1% rise on the previous year.

The report says these positive results are best exhibited in Germany, which is the leading country for PE film extrusion in Europe. Germany has seen its film extrusion industry pretty much maintain its status throughout the financial crisis, and the subsequent Eurozone crisis with demand in 2016 finally surpassing pre-crisis levels. In Italy, however, which previously had been the largest market for the production of PE film, film extruders have struggled to regain volumes since the financial crisis, with the market still 24% smaller than it was in 2007.

It is estimated that more than 80% of all the film products manufactured in Europe are based on PE grades. The growth and continued dominance of PE in this segment of the market is driven by the development of more sophisticated resins, including linear varieties, a wide range of copolymers, and improved grades of conventional HDPE and MDPE resins. Linear grades of PE, including metallocenes, are now believed to account for the majority of feedstocks used by film extruders as the greater availability and lower cost of C4 linear grades has increasingly replaced the use of conventional LDPE. AMI estimates the split of demand amongst film extruders as 44% for LL grades, 43% conventional LDPE, and 13% HDPE/MDPE.

The PE film industry continues to evolve and change through merger, acquisition, and new investments,. Staying up-to-date with the changes and developments in this market is a huge challenge, says AMI. A directory of Polyethylene Film Extruders in Europe helps track these changes as it provides detailed information on more than 1,200 PE film extrusion sites in Europe.

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