The hottest TPE global focus will shift to Asia

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TPE's global focus will shift to Asia, and some major changes are about to take place in the thermoplastic elastomer (TPE) industry

at the TPE TOPCON industry conference held by the American Society of plastic engineers in Akron, Ohio, US, market analyst Bob eller said, "the shift of industry focus to Asia must be checked for equipment parts" is the most influential factor on TPE in the current environment. "

but eller believes there are other factors

he added: "some TPE markets in western countries are gradually maturing. The prices in these markets are becoming more and more commercialized, and the degree of customization is declining. Perhaps this situation can be considered as providing market opportunities for small companies, and posing a severe price challenge to the rather saturated TPE."

"now TPE is gradually divided into two parts: Commodity TPE and special TPE. This brings opportunities to customized TPE composite manufacturers who mainly focus on customized materials. Their goals are aimed at higher value applications such as airbag doors."

eller's words may not be what TPE manufacturers in North America are happy to hear. For a long time, these enterprises have advertised their products as high value-added special materials, which are different from commodity TPE

however, eller also mentioned the more positive side. He believes that TPE has huge growth opportunities in the world. For example, at present, the thermoplastic vulcanizate (TPV) used in each vehicle produced in China is only 4.4 pounds, while India is even lower, only 3.3 pounds. The world average is 5.7 pounds

eller is robertellerassociatesinc. in Akron The owner of the company

new markets for TPV and other types of TPE include weatherstrips, hoses and belts, as well as elastic fibers and films

Eller said, "thermoplastic polyurethane with higher performance has been introduced in the market. In addition, with the expansion of the chemical family of 'styrene block copolymer', various new processing technologies make the combination of soft/hard surface and foam/solid structure possible."

looking into the future, eller said that Asia's emerging TPE composite manufacturing enterprises may have more advantages than western competitors, even though Western enterprises have established a firm foothold in automotive applications. At present, cars still account for% of the TPE market. He explained that despite the growing demand for TPE in the U.S. automotive industry, the world's Chinese government has accelerated the pace of urbanization, and other regions have greater growth potential

eller said: "western enterprises should specialize in special TPE when opening the Asian market, rather than selling all products. The global TPE life cycle curve is changing its shape. This significantly higher curve is more diversified, and the number of composite manufacturers participating in competition will be more."

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