Demand for polymer in India has grown rapidly over the past decade, outstripping growth in the country’s gross domestic product (GDP), As per a report by GlobalData. While GDP grew at a combined annual growth rate of 7.6% from 2000 to 2011, polymer demand grew at 9.1%. India is the third largest consumer of polymers worldwide after China and the US. Its share of consumption rose from 3.5% in 2000 to 5.7% in 2011. Commodity plastics account for the lion’s share of polymer demand on the sub-continent. Consequently, most capacity additions in recent years have focused on PE, PP, PVC, PET and styrene-butadiene rubber (SBR), which together account for more than 90% of output.
The packaging and automotive sectors are the growth drivers of India’s polymer industry. Packaging currently accounts for more than half of demand, while its automotive industry is one of the world’s fastest growing. Output of new automobiles doubled from 9.5 mln units in 2006 to 18.2 mln units in 2011.