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Plastic vision: seeking game-changers around the world

The global plastics industry will be worth upwards of US$ 650 billion this year, according to analysts at Grand View Research. This is predicted to grow to US$ 720 billion in the next five years.

One thing is clear: it will be a busy year for plastics recyclers. To showcase the best practices of worldwide leaders, we are launching a dedicated plastics recycling magazine this summer.

Lots of plastic means lots of potential for recycling – and the latest available data helps us get a sense of the current situation. Unsurprisingly, the biggest global plastics producer is China with a share of almost 30% while the US, Canada and Mexico jointly account for around 18% of the world’s plastics. Europe is responsible for 19% with Africa at 7%, Latin America on 4%, Japan over 3.5% and roughly 2.5% from the Commonwealth of Independent States.  

Meanwhile, market analysts expect US production of the most common plastic, polyethylene, to jump more than 40% by 2028. Currently, new plastic produced worldwide uses only a little over 10% of recycled plastic as a raw material. The global recycling rate for plastics hovers around 20%. It doesn’t help that between 4 and 12 million tonnes of plastic scrap ends up in the oceans annually.

It’s clear that big investments in innovative equipment and technologies, as well as the latest recycling plants, are necessary to increase recycling rates. Bold collaborations between recycling firms, researchers, engineers and product designers are another important piece of the puzzle.

While we acknowledge there is much work to do, we are eager to promote the many success stories the industry has to offer. Our new title “Recycling International – Plastics Edition” will come out in July. Would you like to be part of this unique magazine? Reach out to us and share your innovative recycling developments!

Would you like to share any interesting developments or article ideas with us? Don't hesitate to contact us.

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