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Global Medical Device Packaging demand to rise 5.9% annually through 2017

Global Medical Device Packaging demand to rise 5.9% annually through 2017

World demand for medical device packaging is projected to increase 5.9% pa to US$25.7 bln in 2017, as per The Freedonia Group, Inc. Reflecting the operation of advanced and diversified medical product industries, the US, Western Europe, and Japan will continue to account for almost 60% of the total market. However, demand in these countries will expand below the average global pace as intensifying health care cost containment pressures and fierce multiple supplier competition weaken growth prospects for medical device production and heighten the price sensitivity of their producers to packaging costs. The fastest expanding medical device packaging markets will emerge in India, Mexico, China, and the more prosperous Africa/Mideast countries, where diversification, expansion, and stricter regulation of medical product industries are raising the quality and functional requirements of containers and related accessories. The US will continue to be the largest market for medical device packaging, as its advanced medical product producers commercialize new high value-added supplies, instruments and equipment with specialized packaging needs. Gains in West European and Japanese demand will also benefit from new product introductions, as well as from the upgrading of government and industry standards covering the barrier, security and tracking properties of medical device packaging. In the developing world, China will provide the largest and broadest sales opportunities for medical device containers and related accessories due to burgeoning domestic and export markets for its medical goods. Spurred by rising internal and external investment, China is evolving into a leading worldwide developer and supplier of technologically advanced medical products.

Based on adaptability to cost effective infection-resistant and security-enhanced formats, pouches and trays will continue to lead sales among container types. Growth in pouch demand will reflect ongoing advances in strength, puncture resistance and barrier properties, which will expand applications in the packaging of small- to medium-sized supplies and devices, including sharps. Multiple compartment trays will build sales as they virtually eliminate the risk of staff errors and the spread of infectious agents during the preparation of products for surgery and various other patient procedures. Clamshell packs will also fare well in the global marketplace as they match or exceed all the advantages of rigid trays while offering greater protection against product damage during transport and storage. Containers will make up about 80% of medical device packaging demand through 2017 and beyond. Among other medical device containers, blister packs and glass vials will account for the fastest expanding demand: the former from applications in the packaging of contact lenses; the latter from applications in the packaging of diagnostic reagents and related substances. By contrast, bags -- which are used primarily for the packaging of large and odd-sized products -- will decelerate based on the downsizing and miniaturization of many medical supplies and devices. Demand for boxes will also slow as cost considerations erode some secondary packaging. The fastest gains among medical device packaging accessories will be seen in high visibility labels and tamper-evident and other security accessories. Demand for these products will benefit from more strict government regulations and industry standards covering the safety, security, and functional features of medical device containers.

CAGR for plastics for healthcare packaging of 5.6% has been predicted through 2018 by BCC Research. The global plastic healthcare packaging market was estimated in terms of volume at nearly 9.6 billion lb in 2012 and is expected to surpass 10 billion lb in 2013. The market is expected to reach more than 13 billion lb in terms of volume by 2018, and register a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5.6%. Healthcare plastics find increased use each year in applications in healthcare packaging. In these changing times and in context of the emphasis on healthcare cost control, plastics are expected to increasing their penetration in healthcare packaging. Until recently, most healthcare product markets grew unfettered by cost control. Only in recent years have cost containment efforts truly began to affect healthcare packaging and other markets within the healthcare industry. Plastic healthcare packaging products are segmented into two groups: medical and pharmaceutical. The former includes syringes, tubing, kits, intravenous (IV) bags, other bags and parts, trays, and a miscellaneous group. Pharmaceutical packaging products are made up of containers (mostly bottles and vials), closures (caps, lids, etc.), blister packaging, and a miscellaneous category that includes other bags, pouches, etc. According to BCC Research, containers, tubing, syringes and kits are the leading healthcare packaging applications, and account for about 65% of total plastic volume. BCC believes the healthcare packaging market will also be positively impacted by increased use of disposable products, an ageing population in the U.S. and Europe, a continued shift to contract packaging, growing overseas markets, and the emphasis on child-resistant/senior-friendly, and tamper-evident packaging.

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