GCC plastics capacity gains 6%
Plastics production in the Gulf is expanding and diversifying fast, reaching 25.5m tons last year, says the Gulf Petrochemicals and Chemicals Association (GPCA).GPCA’s research found the sector’s capacity grew 6% in 2014, according to an association press release on 31 December.

But the region’s polymer portfolio is forecast to double over the next five years, amid a further 25% rise in capacity. GPCA Secretary General Dr Abdulwahab Al-Sadoun said GCC plastics producers had grow “despite market fluctuations and increased competition”.

“The region’s polymer producers and converters have demonstrated a sense of agility, flexibility and stability in the face of regional and global challenges,” he said.

In 2014, Saudi Arabia led the GCC’s plastics production – manufacturing 18.3m tons (72%) of its plastics resins – followed by the UAE 913%).

To its current portfolio of 13 products, by 2020 the sector is set to add 16, for applications in aviation, transport and food packaging, according to the GPCA.

The association also foresees the rise of a ‘Made in the GCC’ branding.

“Over the next five years, the Gulf’s plastic producers have the potential to create a distinct identity for themselves, where their products are seen as cost- effective, reliable and high value,” said Dr Al-Sadoun.