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Aging resistant: Ceresana examines the global market for plastic stabilizers
Without stabilizing chemicals, many plastic and rubber products would be destroyed after a short time by heat, oxidation or UV rays.
Thermostabilizers and UV stabilizers
The plastics industry requires large quantities of stabilizers, especially for the production and processing of polyvinyl chloride (PVC). The most important application is plastic pipes, for which more than 400,000 tonnes of stabilizers are currently consumed each year. Behind them come profiles, cables, films and other applications. Accordingly, demand for stabilizers is primarily determined by developments in the construction industry. Regional differences are striking: In Europe, stabilizers are mainly needed for PVC profiles, while in Asia they are used for pipes. Components made of plastic can help save energy. Growing environmental awareness worldwide is therefore one reason for the rising demand in stabilizers.
Alternative stabilizers wanted
Stabilizers are mostly based on heavy metals such as lead or tin, but also on calcium, liquid metal soaps and other starting materials. In the European Union, the industry has been phasing out the use of lead-based stabilizers since 2015; the recycling of PVC with lead stabilizers is still controversial. By now, calcium-based stabilizers are by far the most demanded type in Europe. In other regions, demand for alternative, more environmentally friendly stabilizers is also increasing. Sales of tin stabilizers are expected to reach around 237,000 tonnes in 2031. Tin stabilizers account for the highest share of the overall market in North America. Globally, Asia-Pacific is the largest market for stabilizers with a share of around 61%, followed by Western Europe.
Current market data on stabilizers
Chapter 1 of the new Ceresana report provides a presentation and analysis of the global market for plastic stabilizers – including forecasts up to 2031. Different types of stabilizers are considered in detail: tin stabilizers, lead stabilizers, calcium-based stabilizers, liquid mixed metal stabilizers, and other products. The study also examines the application areas for stabilizers: