Rapid growth in demand in emerging markets is driving investment in nonwovens, according to a report in the latest issue of Technical Textile Markets from the business information company Textiles Intelligence.
Several nonwovens roll goods producers are building, or have recently built, new facilities and new lines with the aim of targeting growing demand in markets in Asia, Australasia, the Middle East, North Africa, South America and Southern Africa.
In the Asia-Pacific region, demand for nonwoven fabrics is forecast to grow by 9.6 percent per annum between 2010 and 2015, according to Freedonia Group. China will account for almost half of additional demand worldwide.
Avgol, an Israel-based spunbond nonwovens, First Quality Nonwovens, a producer of spunmelt nonwovens and Mitsui Chemicals, a Japan-based nonwovens producer with facilities in Japan and Thailand, have announced they are adding new lines or new facilities in China.
In other nonwovens news from around the globe:
- Andrew Industries, a UK-based specialist in baghouse filters, has purchased a production plant in Wuxi from the Finnish company Ahlstrom, adding to its dust filtration material assets in China. The company plans to add a needlepunch line at the plant to make PTFE felts. The new capacity will support a new bag fabricating and distribution facility that opened in Chennai, India in late 2011.
- Hollingsworth & Vose, a USA-based supplier of engineered papers and nonwovens, has formed a joint venture with the Nath Group to build a new mill in Maharashtra, India.
- South Korea-based Toray Advanced Materials added a second line at its Chinese operation in March 2011. The company announced its 20,000-ton line planned for Tangerang in Indonesia. Toray’s investments in China and Indonesia are being driven by predictions of rapid growth in demand for disposable baby diapers in member countries of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (ASEAN) as a result of strong economic growth in this region.
- Asahi Kasei, a Japan-based producer of nonwovens aimed primarily at the diaper market, has begun construction of a new line in Thailand, in partnership with Saha Group. The line represents the company’s first investment outside Japan.
- Fibertex, a Denmark-based producer of nonwovens, has recently finished construction of another spunmelt line at its Malaysian facility. Production on the line will target personal care markets. Fibertex has also expanded in the southern hemisphere with a new operation in South Africa to manufacture needlepunched nonwovens for geotextiles and products for the South African automotive industry.
- Pegas, a spunmelt nonwovens producer that operates nine lines in the Czech Republic, has announced its first foreign investment by revealing plans to build a manufacturing site in Egypt.