The global market for geotextiles was valued at US$3.2 bln in 2011 and is expected to reach US$6.4 bln in 2018, growing at a CAGR of 10.3% from 2012 to 2018, as per Transparency Market Research. In terms of volume, the demand for geotextiles was 1,904 mln sq meters in 2011 and is expected to reach 3,398.4 mln sq meters in 2018, growing at a CAGR of 8.6% from 2012 to 2018. Increasing demand from roadway construction, especially from BRIC countries, is expected to drive geotextile demand over the next five years. Special focus on the use of geotextiles in infrastructural activities coupled with favorable regulatory support is also expected to have a positive impact on global demand. However, the fluctuating cost of commonly used raw materials such as polypropylene and polyester is expected to have an adverse effect on the market over the forecast period. In addition, the absence of defined standards across the countries has also emerged as a key challenge for market participants. Among the product types, non-woven geotextiles was the largest consumed segment, accounting for over 60% of the overall demand in 2011. However, woven fabrics are expected to show substantial growth over the forecast period. Road construction was the largest application segment for geotextiles, and was valued at US$1502.8 mln in 2011. Asia Pacific dominated global geotextiles demand, accounting for over 41% of global volumes in 2011. European geotextiles market revenue is expected to reach US$1647.7 mln in 2018, while North America market revenue is expected to grow at a CAGR of 9.9% from 2012 to 2018.
Geotextiles are gaining importance on account of large scale infrastructural development going on at a global level. Geotextiles perform several functions which include separation, filtration, reinforcement, protection and draining. The major applications for geotextiles are road industry, erosion control, waste management and pavement repair. As per Markets and Markets, the emerging economies have large number of projects which are being developed currently. Countries such as China, India and other Asian economies are growing markets for geotextiles industry. Polypropylene and polyester are the major market segments within the geotextile materials market. U.S. is the major hub for geotextiles demand in North America. Within Europe, most of the major market players are situated in countries such as U.K., Germany, Denmark, The Netherlands and Italy. Asian manufacturers are primarily based in China and India. Within the regional market, Asia dominates the global geotextile industry. It is estimated to reach US$2.5 bln by 2017. The growth of Asian market is expected to be highest among all regions. North American region is the second largest market of geotextiles and is estimated to reach a value of US$1.7 bln by 2017.
Many countries are adopting geosynthetic products to construct road and bridges. Geosynthetics materials, especially geogrids and geotextiles, are used in road construction to increase the performance of the roads. As per Research and Markets, geogrids consists of polymers formed into rigid grid like configurations. They are used in sub-base layers of roads, to provide stiffness and strength. In addition, the development of wind energy projects has increased the demand for geosynthetic materials. According to the report, one of the main drivers of this market is the increased utilization of geotextiles in road and railway construction. Contractors are increasing aware of geotextiles' long-term cost and performance advantages when compared with traditional methods of road construction. This, in turn, has led to an increased adoption of geotextiles by contractors worldwide. According to the report, one of the major growth drivers in the market is the increasing demand for geosynthetic products and materials from the construction industry, especially in the emerging nations. Emerging nations such as China, Brazil, and India are experiencing huge growth in construction, and this in turn increase the demand for geosynthetic products in these countries. Further, the report states that one of the major challenges in the market is the lack of awareness of the benefits associated with using geosynthetic materials. Usage of geosynthetic products in many of the emerging nations is low compared to that in developed countries. This is due to the lack of awareness about the benefits of geosynthetic materials. One of the major benefits of the geosynthetic materials are that they are easy to install. The analysts forecast the Global Geotextiles market to grow at a CAGR of 10.96% over the period 2012-2016. One of the key factors contributing to this market growth is the increasing demand for geotextiles in road and railway construction. The Global Geotextiles market has also been witnessing an increased use of natural geotextiles. However, the rise in raw material prices could pose a challenge to the growth of this market. Natural geotextiles are used as temporary short-term reinforcements. The use of synthetic geotextiles in these applications is overly expensive and not feasible in developing/emerging economies. Also, most developing economies have an abundant supply of renewable raw-materials. Natural geotextiles provide a less expensive option to meet end-user requirements. Synthetic geotextiles, based on polypropylene and polystyrene, are also non-biodegradable and have a longer life than the structures they are protecting. This has caused manufacturers to switch to cheaper eco-friendly alternatives for short-term applications. For instance, geotextiles used to control soil erosion is only used for a short duration, after which natural vegetation growth takes over. Also, the strength and durability of natural fibers is sufficient for short-term applications; they also do not have any lasting effect on the environment. Thus, the use of natural geotextiles is expected to increase in the forecast period which will lead to the growth of the Global Geotextiles market.