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APIC 2014: Global Fibers Overview

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Global Fibres Overview

World Fibre Production Trends

  • World fibre production has excellent correlation with GDP which we use as basis for projections to 2025
  • Total fibre production expected to grow 3.7% per annum to 2025
  • Global 2013 fibre production estimated at 85.5 million tons
  • Global 2013 synthetic fibre production estimated at 55.8 million tons (i.e. excluding cotton, cellulosics and wool)
  • Global synthetic fibre volume growth is 98%+ of future total fibre production increases. 
  • Polyester (filament and staple) makes up 95%+ of future global synthetic fibre production growth.

World Polyester Filament Production Trends

  • Polyester filament growth nearly three times the average of all fibres during the last five years (7.9% vs. 3.1%)
  • Global 2013 filament production just under 29 million tons (7% growth over 2012)
  • Major production increases forecast for China, India and the US
  • Production increase in US due to share gains in carpet industry by polyester BCF
  • Production decreased in essentially all other developed countries
  • Future production growth (through 2025) expected to moderate to 6% per annum (still almost twice all other fibre growth)

World Polyester Staple Production Trends

  • Global polyester staple production growth during last five years 6.4%
  • Production increases in 2012/13 for polyester staple production slowed significantly after above trend growth in 2010/11 due to cotton substitution
  • As with polyester filament, China dominates with 65% of global production
  • Future production growth 4-5% through 2025 with China and India dominating
  • Limited cotton production growth through 2025 will be primary driver for polyester staple

World Polyamide Filament Production Trends

  • Although production growth for polyamide fibre from 2007 to 2012 was flat, sharply higher volumes (~10%) were experienced in 2013, due to textile and industrial growth in China and improved carpet and automotive markets in the US
  • Recent increases in polyamide production are expected to moderate to 1-2% per annum growth through 2025, despite 5% growth expected in China
  • Future growth limited by additional polyester substitution expected in carpet and some industrial applications including side air-curtains

World Acrylic Fibre Production Trends

  • Global acrylic fibre production has fallen 30% since its high point in 2004 • Production in 2013 (slightly under 2 million tons) was flat compared with 2012
  • Acrylic fibre costs continue to suffer from propylene availability and high acrylonitrile conversion costs
  • Despite a sharp fall in production over the past 10 years, more modest declines of 1-2% are forecast due to weak supplies of wool and cotton and continuing technical advantages for acrylic fibre in certain markets 

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