Asia's 2012 nonwovens production increases to 3.2 million tonnes, with China representing 67% of output, while Japan comes in second but its production has dropped since 2009; China and India still key to Asia's nonwovens expansion: report

, March 1, 2014 () – The table at right shows the output of nonwovens in Asian countries. Gross production has increased steadily and was estimated at 3.2 million tons in 2012. China represents the majority, an overwhelming 67% of output or 2.1 million tons. Japan is ranked second but it is much smaller than China. Japan's nonwovens industry has still not recovered from the worldwide recession and production has decreased since 2009. Meanwhile, production levels in Korea started to decrease in 2012 after steadily increasing for several years before that. Output in Taiwan decreased 20% in 20-12 after increasing in 2010-2011. On the contrary, production in India is increasing.

In terms of output by country, China and India have been changing steadily so production expansion in Asia depends heavily on these two countries. The nonwovens industry in those two countries will continue to grow as population rates increase. In addition to China and India, Thailand and Indonesia are expected to scale up in production due to the large population of the area despite low productivity.

In terms of processes, spunbond and meltblown occupy 45% of the market; needlepunch accounts for 27%, spun lace accounts for 11%, thermal bonded accounts for 6% and chemical bond represents 5%. In China and India, the quantity of production of spimbond/meltblown nonwovens is particularly large but in Korea, needlepunch production is just as large as spunbond/meltblown. Taiwan has decent sized needlepunch and spunlace markets, with both representing the same size.

Although various methods are used in different countries to process nonwovens, the spunbond/meltblown method is used in most countries for diapers.

China, India and Indonesia all have low penetration levels of diapers made from nonwovens and demand is expected to increase rapidly with the future economic development. Subsequently, the demand For spunbond/meltblown nonwovens will expand with the economic development of those countries.

By Kin Ohmura Osaka Chemical Service

Countries  2008   2009   2010   2011   2012
Japan       338    287    317    312    322
Korea       215    220    225    233    726
Taiwan      150    140    150    165    131
China      1347   1685   1879   2005   2163
India       135    162    175    186    223
Others      132    130    140    145    152
Total      2317   2624   2886   3096   3217

(c) 2014 Rodman Publishing

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