Construction signals healthy outlook for plastic
Published: Sun 6 Jan 2019, 4:13 PM
Last updated: Tue 8 Jan 2019, 11:16 AM
The ongoing growth in the UAE and GCC region's construction industry will drive the demand for a variety of plastic products, experts at ArabPlast 2019 said.
Dr Abdullah bin Mohammed Belhaif Al Nuaimi, UAE Minister of Infrastructure Development, inaugurated the event on Sunday, which features the participation of more than 900 companies from 32 countries including 14 national pavilions. "Petrochemicals, plastic, and rubber are the key drivers of economic growth for any country, and exhibitions such as ArabPlast not only offer a strategic platform for participants and visitors to explore ground-breaking solutions and cutting-edge technologies, but also serve as a medium to promote international alliances and sales," he said.
According to a study by the International Energy Agency (IEA), petrochemicals are becoming the largest drivers of global oil demand, ahead of cars, planes, and trucks. Petrochemicals are set to account for more than a third of the growth in world oil demand to 2030, and nearly half the growth to 2050, adding nearly seven million barrels of oil a day by then. They are also poised to consume an additional 56 billion cubic metres (bcm) of natural gas by 2030, and 83 bcm by 2050.
"Most economies rely on petrochemicals given how prevalent they are in everyday products. The Gulf has a high potential to grow, given the advancement surrounding the petrochemical industry," said Satish Khanna, general manager at Al Fajer Information & Services, Dubai, organisers of ArabPlast 2019.
"Plastic and the petrochemical industry is driving new trends around the world, including a growing number of applications in various cutting-edge, clean technologies critical to sustainable energy systems. In the coming years, the industry is not just set for a robust growth, but will also be one of the leading sectors to drive the economy of the countries," added Khanna.
Emmanuel Flouvat, general director at MFTech, noted that the demand for plastic was on the rise across the region. This growth, he added, is also mirrored in the growth in demand for machinery that creates specialised products. "The big trend in the industry right now is a call for more automation, because a lot of the plastic products were being made by hand in the past. More automation would mean an increase in accuracy in product design, as well as an increase in productivity. There are lots of opportunities being created by the building construction industry, not just in the UAE, but across the GCC region."