Pipe resin consumption to grow 3,1% per year

Annual resin consumption in the European pipe market will reach 4.1 million tonnes by 2005, with overall growth projected at 3.1% a year, according to David Durand, director of global research at Phillip Townsend Associates.
The growth will be more marked in Central and Eastern Europe, at 5.4% a year, than in Western Europe, here consumption is forecast to expand at 2.4% a year over the same period.

Durand identified polypropylene and cross-linked polyethylene (PEX) as the fastest growing resins in the European pipe market. He said: “We expect 9% growth a year in PP because of new grades that will allow replacement of both traditional non-plastic materials and PVC in the building sector and in sewer pipes. Growth in PEX, estimated at over 5.5% a year, will be driven by indoor heating and plumbing.”

While not growing as fast as PP, PVC and HDPE will remain the dominant resins in European pipes, Durand forecast. “PVC provides a good cost/performance balance despite environmental pressures, while PE is the preferred resin for pressure pipe for gas and water distribution.”

Main applications across Europe for the pipe market include sewage (30%), water distribution (16%) and building pipe (15%). The fastest growing applications are gas distribution, cable conduit and building pipe. “We expect to see around 5% increase in gas distribution applications driven by increased use of high pressure HDPE grades versus steel,” he said.
David Durand will be one of 17 speakers at European Plastics News’ Pipes 2002 conference in Brussels on 5-6 November. For details contact EC Conferences on +44 (0) 20 7505 8564.

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