World Corrugated Boxes
World demand to grow 4% annually through 2017
World demand for corrugated boxes willrise 4.0 percent per year to 226 billionsquare meters in 2017. Advances willrepresent a notable acceleration from the2007-2012 period, in which most developedworld markets in North Americaand Western Europe experienced sluggishincreases -- or even declines -- incorrugated box demand. Going forward,gains will be driven by an improvedeconomic outlook as these regionscontinue to recover from the globaleconomic downturn.
As economies strengthen, demand formanufactured goods will increase as amatter of course, stimulating sales ofrelated packaging like corrugated boxes.The continued expansion of the electronicshopping market will drive heightenedrequirements for corrugated boxes usedin the fulfillment of such sales. Advanceswill also be fueled by the expanded food,beverage and durable goods output, whilerising construction spending will stimulatedemand for goods and materials (andtheir related boxes) used in constructionapplications.
Opportunities are also anticipated forretail-ready, or shelf-ready, corrugatedbox packaging, which is increasinglydemanded by retailers as a means ofcontrolling labor costs. Retail-readycorrugated boxes are designed to enableproducts to be placed on store shelveswith minimal preparation. Such boxestend to incorporate clean tearing featuresthat allow the boxes to be converted fromshipping containers into display trayswithout the use of box knives.
Asia/Pacific market to remain largest, fastest growing
The Asia/Pacific region will remain thelargest and fastest-growing outlet forcorrugated boxes through 2017. Gainswill continue to be driven by the largemarket in China; although slowing fromthe double digit growth seen during the2002-2012 period, the country will poststrong gains going forward. Corrugatedbox demand in the region will alsobenefit from healthy gains in countriessuch as India and Vietnam, althoughsubpar increases in the Japanese marketwill temper this to some extent. Aboveaveragegrowth is also forecast forCentral and South America and in Africa/Mideast regions, areas in which corrugateddemand per capita is below theworld average. Although North Americaand Western Europe will post belowaverage gains, corrugated box demand inthese markets will rebound from 2007-2012 declines.
Demand for containerboard, the primaryraw material for corrugated boxes, willalso accelerate from the slow growth ofthe 2007-2012 period. However, volumegrowth will be restrained by the heighteneduse of lighter weight, high performancecontainerboard in light of sustainabilityand cost control efforts. NorthAmerica and Western Europe will alsosee demand improve from the declines ofthe 2007-2012 period, with both regionscontinuing to be net exporters of containerboard.The Asia/Pacific region willremain the leading market for containerboardwith strong growth in demandanticipated for China, India, Indonesia,and Vietnam. However, although containerboardproduction is expected to outpacedemand, the region will remain a netimporter of containerboard. In both theAfrica/Mideast and Central and SouthAmerica regions, containerboard productionwill expand faster than demand,although both markets will remain netimporters. Containerboard demand inEastern Europe is expected to expand atan average pace.
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