Tapes represent 70% of the market, while labels and graphics represent 21% and 9% of the total, respectively. Specialty tape and medical end uses exhibit the greatest growth prospects. Protective films and paper, as well as electronic applications, are forecasted for double-digit growth. This growth readily corresponds to the explosive use of electronic devices in every aspect of our society. Medical tapes, graphics, foam tapes and double-sided tapes will offer healthy growth of 8-9% globally.
Geographically, the Asia Pacific region is the largest producer of pressure-sensitive materials, with a 56% share of the market (see Figure 1). Within the Asia Pacific, four countries-Japan, China, Korea and Taiwan-dominate the concentration of business; collectively, they account for 93% of the PSA business within the region. North America and Europe are roughly equal in size, at 22% and 20% of the market, respectively. These regions are quite mature and exhibit corresponding competitive dynamics at a macro level as a result.
As for substrates used in pressure-sensitive materials, films dominate with 58% of the total; paper substrates make up 29%, mostly due to their use within the label industry. Foams have grown to represent 6% of pressure-sensitive material usage, while foils remain relatively flat with a 3% share of the market.
In general, PSAs stand to gain significant ground over the next five years as the industry recoils nicely from the losses caused by the economic downturn (see Figure 2). Over time, the resilience of pressure-sensitive materials as clean, user-friendly technologies for the delivery of bonded materials will continue to outpace the liquid adhesive industry.
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