According to a newly released report from Business Communications Company, Inc., "RP-183 Nonwoven Materials and Products," the global market for nonwoven fabrics is estimated at 9.1 billion pounds valued at $13.4 billion in 2004. Rising at an average annual growth rate (AAGR) of 4.8 percent, this market is expected to reach 11.5 billion pounds by 2009. The developed nations of North America, Western Europe and Japan currently represent nearly 60 percent of the total market. This is changing, however, as globalization leads to greater manufacturing activity migrating to China and similar nations. These nations are also developing mass consumer markets. Both considerations will lead to greater global demand for nonwovens.

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