Generally produced from petrochemicals, synthetic fibers are man-made fibers which possess superior physical and chemical properties, such as durability, elasticity, strength, etc. Synthetic fibers are also cost effective compared to their natural counterpart and are more stain and water resistant as compared with natural fibers such as cotton or silk. Synthetic fibers play a key role in day to day human life. Along with apparels, synthetic fibers are used in numerous industrial, outdoor, indoor, and commercial applications. Some of the common synthetic fibers include nylon, acrylic, polyester, carbon fiber, etc.; whereas rayon, spandex, etc. are specialty synthetic fibers.
Last few decades have seen significant growth in consumption of synthetic fibers globally. Synthetic fibers do not wrinkle easily and possess good elastic properties which make them comfortable to wear. Synthetic fibers are easy to wash, dry up quickly and can be dyed easily. Due to technological advances in production methods and superior physical, chemical, and mechanical characteristics, synthetic fibers are not only well recognized for their use in general textile, but also play crucial role in key end user industries such as healthcare, aerospace, food packaging, water purification, electronics, automotive, air filters, and others.
Furthermore, durability, cost effectiveness, and easy maintenance are anticipated to have a positive impact on the synthetic fiber market growth over the forecast period. Moreover, rapid industrialization, changing consumer pattern for textiles, and increasing disposable income are projected to drive the global synthetic fiber market over the forecast period 2016–2026.
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Consumers highly prefer characteristics such as durability, better stain resistance, softness, and elasticity in their fiber uses; and manufacturers’ ability to provide all such properties at lower costs is one of the key driving factors for the growth of the global synthetic fiber market. Furthermore, changing fashion trends are also expected to have perceptible effects on the global synthetic fiber market. The lower cost of synthetic fibers as compared to natural fibers also encourages their use among consumers. Furthermore, weak supply of natural fibers such as cotton is another factor, expected to drive the global synthetic fiber market over the forecast period.
Environmental concerns such as non-biodegradability of synthetic fibers are expected to pose significant challenges to manufacturers across the globe. Apart from this, synthetic fibers possess low melting point and burn faster compared to natural fibers. Such environmental and safety concerns are some of the key restraining factors which might hamper the growth of the global synthetic fiber market.
Manufacturers across the globe are focused in R&D to develop various technologies and processes to impart better technical and safety characteristics in their products. Special attention has been given to incorporate functional changes in synthetic fibers with little or no hazardous impact on the environment.
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Supported by Megatrend of population growth and rising disposable income, market outlook for Asia-Pacific is expected to remain positive and strong over the forecast period. Globally, China and India are expected to be key suppliers as well as consumers of synthetic fibers. Taiwan and the U.S. are expected to hold significant shares in the global production capacities. Consumption in Western Europe is expected to be lower compared to other developing regions of the world. Growth in the Middle East and Africa is expected to remain higher as compared to the global average over the forecast period.
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Some of key players identified across the value chain of global synthetic fiber market include DuPont, BASF, W. Barnet GmbH & Co. KG, Toray Industries, Inc., The CHA Textiles Group, Eastman Chemical Company, Mitsubishi Rayon, Asahi KASEI, Radici Group, Jushi Group, and Reliance Industries Limited.
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