More recently, the emerging middle class has contributed greatly towards the demand for plastics packaging.
"Although fluctuating polymer prices have significant knock-on effects on this market with major price pressures for suppliers, the outlook for the long term is positive," says Frost & Sullivan Research Analyst Heather Williams. "The main drivers of this market are continued substitution of conventional materials with plastic and the sustained growth in the food and beverage sectors."
New analysis from Frost & Sullivan (chemicals.frost.com), Southern African Plastics Packaging Market, finds that the market earned revenues of $1.01 billion in 2009 and estimates this to reach $1.41 billion in 2016. The end users covered in this analysis are food and beverage, industrial, households and other segments such as pharmaceutical packaging.
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"Greater consumer demand for plastics packaging is expected due to the spurt in food and beverage production," Williams says. "Additionally, the general industrial use of plastics packaging has increased after the global economic downturn and is expected to sustain demand."
However, low-priced imports of finished products from the east are restraining local growth. The South African government's trade agreements with eastern countries have eased the process of importing goods, making it particularly challenging for the smaller market participants to compete with established producers.
"The import of inexpensive finished goods has increased after the South African government signed trade agreements with China," explains Williams. "Furthermore, Southern Africa's distance from high consumption markets restrains the infrastructural development for plastic exports."
Much progress has also been made in key sub-Saharan African countries, with energy-related infrastructural developments opening up opportunities for industrial growth. Plastics packaging suppliers are looking into these emerging markets for expansion.
Southern African Plastics Packaging Market is part of the Chemicals & Materials Growth Partnership Services programme, which also includes research in the following markets: South African Engineering Plastics Market and South African Commodity Plastics Market. All research services included in subscriptions provide detailed market opportunities and industry trends that have been evaluated following extensive interviews with market participants.
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Southern African Plastics Packaging Market / M594