Ceresana has analysed the global market for thermoplastic elastomers. According to the study Thermoplastic elastomers – TPE (2nd ed.) published in September 2018, the global market reached a volume of approx. 4.7 million t in 2017. Ceresana says that in 2017, processors in China, the USA, Japan, and Germany combined accounted for 63 % of total global demand.
Production of TPE is dominated by manufacturers in Asia: More than 56 % of global TPE production takes place in this region. Second largest producer was North America, followed by Western Europe. According to Ceresana TPEs are predominantly used in the automotive industry: About 36 % of all TPE products are used in the manufacturing of vehicles. The applications cover segments such as fabric coating, sealing components, and bumpers. Therefore, development trends of the automotive and transport industries as well as their suppliers are important indicators for forecasts of future TPE demand.
TPE are also increasingly utilised in the construction and other industries, e.g. mechanical engineering, medical engineering, electric engineering, and electronic engineering. By now, TPE can be found in numerous everyday products such as cables, shoes, sports goods, toys, and household appliances, Ceresana says. The market shares of individual TPE types in part vary widely among individual countries, which is mainly due to the different sizes of respective application areas. The by far most commonly used type of TPE on the global market are SBCs. The second largest TPE market is comprised by TPOs, mainly used in the automotive industry. Ceresana says that another important type of TPE are thermoplastic polyurethanes that can, for example, be used for dashboards and housing shells.