The global acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS) market was USD 20.22 billion in 2014. The product is expected to witness significant gains as a result of exhibiting properties including excellent mechanical strength and superior durability at low temperatures.
ABS is an amorphous thermoplastic polymer, with an ability to display glass transition temperature of 105 degrees and high impact strength. The product finds use in manufacturing automotive ancillaries, construction materials, electronics consumer goods, and appliances on account of exhibiting lightweight characteristics and easy processing characteristics during extrusion and injection molding.
Growing importance of lightweight plastics as a replacement to conventional metals as a raw material for producing automotive ancillaries is expected to have a high impact. Furthermore, the rising spending toward ensuring Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) by automobile vendors in four wheelers is projected to fuel the demand for thermoplastics lightweight polymers.
The favorable outlook toward electronics sector of emerging markets including China and India as a result of introduction of supportive FDI policies to promote investments in manufacturing consumer goods is expected to be a key driving force. Furthermore, easy machinability of ABS through turning, milling, drilling, and die-cutting is projected to increase the industry penetration in medical and protective engineering applications.
Expansion in the market size of advanced engineering polymers including polyether ether ketone (PEEK) in automotive and construction industries owing to providing high glass transition temperature of around 143 degrees is expected to pose a substitutional threat. Furthermore, increasing R&D expenditure aimed for the production of bio-based polymers on account of rising concerns over greenhouse emissions is projected to remain a key challenge.
Automotive was the largest application, accounting for 15% of global volume in 2014. Significant gains in four wheeler manufacturing sector of China, India, Mexico, and Hungary on account of new product launches is expected to have a substantial impact.
The market volume is expected to foresee the tremendous increase in electronics & electrical industry owing to application growth of ABS for the production of enclosures for electrical assemblies. However, increasing usage of silicone elastomers as conductive materials in global electronics sector is projected to pose a credible threat over the next seven years.
Increasing sales volume of consumer electronic products including LED televisions in China, Taiwan, Vietnam, and the Philippines on account of the introduction of new technologies including 4K is expected to play a fundamental role in opening new markets. Furthermore, revival in the home construction sector of the U.S. post great recession is projected to increase the consumption of engineering polymers as building materials.
China ABS market was 4.5 million tons in 2014 and is expected to witness high growth rate on account of the favorable outlook for automotive and construction industries on a domestic level. Furthermore, the strong foothold of electronics manufacturing units coupled with increasing usage of engineering polymers in consumer goods production sector in China is expected to promote the industry expansion.
North America is projected to foresee volume growth at a CAGR of 5.0% from 2015 to 2022. The high adoption rate of lightweight engineering plastics in the U.S. and Canada on account of regulatory inclination for reducing carbon emissions is expected to increase the product consumption. Furthermore, the implementation of National Infrastructure Program (NIP) from 2014 to 2018 in Mexico is projected to open new avenues for ABS market.
The government of Saudi Arabia framed Saudi Vision 2030 in April 2016, which is aimed at shifting their reliance from upstream petroleum industry to promoting investments in construction, and healthcare sectors. This favorable policy is expected to result in the establishment of new strategic business units by plastics manufacturing companies in the vicinity over the forecast period.
Key vendors include Chi Mei Corporation, Styrolution, Formosa Plastic Company, LG Chemical, Kumho Petrochemical Company, SABIC, and DuPont. The market is dominated by companies including, Kumho Petrochemical Company, Formosa Plastic Company, Chi Mei Corporation, Styrolution and LG Chemical, which were accounted for 60% of market share in 2014.
The establishment of strategic partnerships with buyers in automotive, electronics and construction sectors for the development of new products with tailored properties is expected to remain a critical success factor. Developing countries including China and India are projected to remain one of the favorable manufacturing destinations on account of low labor cost along with improvements in automotive, electronics and construction sectors on a domestic level.
Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene (ABS) Application Outlook (Volume, Kilo Tons, Revenue, USD Million, 2012 - 2022)
• Electrical and Electronics
Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene (ABS) Regional Outlook (Volume, Kilo Tons, Revenue, USD Million, 2012 - 2022)
• North America
• Asia Pacific
Research Support Specialist, USA