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Global scrap sector to approach EUR 75 billion by 2027

The metal recycling market is expected to grow to US$ 88.5 billion (EUR 74 billion) by 2027, representing a compound annual growth rate of 8.1%.

The Asia Pacific region dominates the global metal recycling industry share and reflects the rise in an urban population driving the automotive and construction industry, according to analysts at Market Research Future.

The availability of lower cost recycling processes and increasing environmental regulations in countries such as China, Japan, India and other southeast Asian countries boost the size of the metal recycling market. The regional market is expected to maintain its dominant position in the coming years.  

North America ranks second globally in terms of the value of its metal recycling market. This is mostly due to the many innovations in recycling technology and increasing awareness about the benefits of recycling processes among public and private sectors.

Europe demonstrates a ‘rapid growth’ in metal recycling market revenues. ‘Germany holds the key market share and is expected to grow faster during the forecast period,’ the analysts state.

The pandemic has had a mostly positive impact on the metal recycling market revenues, they observe. ‘On one side, recyclers faced various problems, ranging from attracting workers during the lockdown to collect, segregate and recycle metal scrap to deliver recycled products. On the other hand, the pandemic helped the metal recycling industry survive in supply and demand changes.’

The pandemic has also prompted the world to focus more on hygiene and sanitisation, accelerating new and existing metal scrap recycling initiatives. 

Furthermore, initiatives from various public and private organisations to prioritise more sustainable production and more efficient waste management are expected to foster market growth in the global metals recycling sector.

Meanwhile, industry players continue to strive to increase capacity with improved cost efficiency and a leaner organisation supported by new possibilities offered by digitalisation. 

So what’s holding back this potential in the wide world of metal scrap? At the moment, the recycling of ferrous metals comprises just 40% of the total production. Analysts argue that inefficient machinery and recycling processes that fail to recover ferrous scrap from the complete waste generated are currently curbing market growth. Fluctuations in steel prices also pose challenges to market growth. 

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