Global demand for thermoplastic elastomers will rise 5.5 percent annually and reach 5.8 million metric tons in 2017, valued at more than $20 billion, according to a new market study.
Growth will be driven by product innovation that will allow TPEs to replace traditional elastomers and thermoplastics, as well as the ongoing push to reduce vehicle weight and improve fuel economy.
Styrenic block copolymers will remain the leading TPE product type, according to the report from Cleveland-based Freedonia Group Inc. But SBC growth will be slower than the overall average for TPEs, including polyolefin elastomers, a relatively new TPE product that is being used as a performance additive for plastics and packaging adhesives.
China, the world's largest consumer of TPEs in volume terms, will continue to see more than 8 percent annual growth in demand.
The 361-page report, World Thermoplastic Elastomers, costs $6,400.