Geotextiles are permeable textile materials which are designed for use in civil engineering applications such as erosion control, soil stabilisation, reinforcement, separation and drainage. The use of geotextiles can save money by considerably reducing construction times, material costs and the costs of maintaining structures. As per textiles intelligence.com, geotextiles form part of a group of materials known as geosynthetics, together with geogrids, geonets, geomembranes and geocomposites. Geotextiles can be made from nonwoven, woven, knitted or knotted materials. Most, however, are nonwoven-including needlepunched constructions. Needlepunched nonwovens are used mainly in subsurface drainage applications along highways, within embankments, under airfields and athletic arenas. They are also employed in soil separation, permanent erosion control and geomembrane liners within landfills. Such materials are required to provide enough strength and abrasion resistance so that they can withstand stresses during installation and in use. The world geotextile market is enjoying strong growth but it is also highly competitive. In order to succeed, geotextile manufacturers have to develop cost effective, innovative products and processes. Furthermore, to increase their competitiveness in the global geotextile market, they must identify market requirements and introduce advanced products which are specific to customers' requirements
The global geotextiles market is estimated to be worth US$6.3 billion by 2017, with growth expected to come from emerging economies in Asia, as per marketsandmarkets. Geotextiles are gaining importance on account of large scale infrastructural development going on at a global level. Geotextiles performs several functions which include separation, filtration, reinforcement, protection, and draining. Major applications for geotextiles are road industry, erosion control, waste management and pavement repair. The emerging economies have large number of projects which are being developed currently. Major players in European and North American regions include TenCate, GSE, Propex Global, Fiberweb, NAUE, and Huesker Synthetic. Countries such as China, India and other Asian economies are growing markets for geotextiles industry. U.S. is the major hub for geotextile 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. Nonwoven geotextile is the major market segment for global geotextiles industry followed by woven geotextiles. These two types of products cover a major portion of the global geotextiles market with most of the market players involved in manufacturing and supplying of these product types. Polypropylene, polyester, and polyethylene are the major categories within the geotextiles materials market which are used in the production of geotextile products. Over the past few years, polypropylene and polyester have been the favorite materials for geotextile product manufacturers. Road industry is the dominating applications segment within geotextiles market. More than 50% of the market demand is expected to come from this segment. It is estimated that over the next five years, road industry will govern the geotextiles market share as far as applications are concerned. Some other major applications within geotextiles market include erosion control, waste containment, and pavement repair. The Asian geotextiles market is expected to have the largest demand for geotextiles in the coming few years with China leading the regional claim. Large scale infrastructural projects in the Asian region have led to drastic rise in the geotextiles need. The European and North American markets are also huge in terms of volume and are having moderate growth rate when compared to the Asian continent.
Medical and geotextile demand are driving nonwoven growth in the MENA region. Hospital acquired infections (HAI) are rapidly increasing and now kill more people per year than AIDS, breast cancer and car accidents combined. Another sector driving demand is the rapid developments of infrastructure in emerging economies which require geotextile nonwovens in highway, railway, water storage, sea-defence and airport construction applications.Economic stability in India has boosted demand for more roads, railways, highways, bridges, canals and dams, and the Federation of Indian Chambers of Commerce and Industry (FICCI) projects a 20% increase in the geotextile sector based on the boom. Geotextiles enhance design, durability, cost-effectiveness and aesthetics of infrastructure projects, and demand is expected to grow 10-12% through 2013.