The global demand for steel drums & IBCs accounted for revenues equating US$ 13 Bn in 2018; FMI’s new study estimates growth to hover at 4% mark during the next decade. Increasing global trade and growing proclivity to invest in efficient transportation are supporting market growth, according to the authors of the report.
Increasing focus on achieving cost-effectiveness in logistics, along with growing transportation of hazardous and non-hazardous materials have brought steel drums and IBCs at the center stage. Moreover, as steel drums & IBCs are considered as one of the safest forms of packaging for dangerous goods such as chemicals, demand has remained steady over the years. The market is likely to be influenced by reusability that results in cost-savings in reverse logistics and traceability that enhances consumer services.
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Growing Demand for Steel Drums & IBCs in China
East Asian countries continue to offer significant opportunities for steel drums & IBC manufacturers. The demand for steel drums & IBCs in China, South Korea, and other East Asian countries is majorly driven by increased spending on trade activities and the growing demand for chemical packaging. The growing investments in increasing production facilities is likely to create significant growth opportunities for market players over the course of the forecast period.
In addition to East Asia, South Asia is likely to remain a lucrative region for the steel drums & IBCs market on account of the expansion of end-use industries which are likely to push the demand during the assessment period. Expanding cross-border trade witnessed across this region is expected to propel sales of steel drums & IBCs. Further, key investments in the European economies focused at IBC production by companies such as Mauser Packaging Solutions and Greif reflect the opportunities offered by the European economies.
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Chemical Industry Remains the Largest Consumer
Major consumption of steel drums and IBCs is witnessed across the chemical sector. The chemical segments is expected to hold approximately 40% share in the global steel drums & IBCs market in 2019. The growing incidents of storage and transportation of hazardous chemicals is expected to support this consumption as steel drums & IBCs are perceived to be safe packaging solutions for such goods. As chemicals pose health risks on leakage and leach, the demand for packaging solutions that prevent exposure to external environment continues to rise, driving steel drums & IBCs’ demand. Another factor supporting the growing consumption of steel drums & IBCs for chemical packaging is the increasing inclination towards sustainable packaging solutions, considering the negative environmental impact of plastic which has been previously used for chemical storage and transport owing to its higher safety standards.
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Companies operating in the steel drums & IBCs market focus on maximizing the production on account of the constant demand growth from the chemical and petroleum and lubricants. Apart from these sectors, newer solutions are also being designed to address the requirements of the food processing and pharmaceutical sectors which include exceptional performance, enhanced handling and labor savings. Moreover, manufacturers continue to emphasize production of customized solutions that are designed to meet specific end-use requirements. Leading manufacturers of steel drums & IBCs are likely to consider expansion of global footprint through acquisitions or collaborations with regional providers.