• Thursday, Jun 24, 2021
  • Last Update : 09:59 pm

Global plastics production falls for first time since 2008

  • Published at 05:08 pm June 10th, 2021
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Output has fallen only twice previously, as a result of the oil crisis in 1973 and during the financial crisis in 2008

Global plastics production declined in 2020 as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic, only the third time since World War II that output has fallen, an industry body said on Thursday.

Output has fallen only twice previously, as a result of the oil crisis in 1973 and during the financial crisis in 2008. 

Worldwide output slipped to 367 million tons last year from 368 million in 2019, a 0.3% decline, according to the industry federation PlasticsEurope.

The drop was due to "the impact of Covid-19 on the global economy", PlasticsEurope said in a statement.

But output in China, which currently accounts for a third of global plastics production, continued to grow by 1.0%.

In Europe, production of new plastics was down 5.1% at 55 million tons last year, PlasticsEurope said.

The automobile sector, one of the biggest customers for the industry, saw its plastics consumption plunge by 18% in Europe in 2020, the federation calculated.

The 27-nation EU now accounts for just 15% of worldwide plastics production, down from 21% in 2010.

The United States produces around 19% of the world's plastics, compared with 20% ten years ago.

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