2nd quarter 2008
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Asian Man-Made Fibre Production Continues to Soar but Will Green Issues Lead to a Change of
published in Issue 73, 2nd quarter 2008
Global fibre production rose to a new record in 2007, according to a report by the Swiss textile machinery company Oerlikon. Furthermore, at 72.6 mn tons, output was up by 5.2%ówell above the long-term average growth rate of 3.4% per annum for the 27 years between 1980 and 2007.
Production of man-made fibres alone rose even fasteróby 8.0%óto reach 44.1 mn tons.
Also, there was an increase in the share of filament yarns, from 54.1% to 55.1%, at the expense of staple fibres.
However, the expansion in man-made fibres as a whole was not universal across all fibre types. Among the established fibres, polyamide, polypropylene and acrylic were all down in volume terms.
This meant that all the growth in man-mades was confined to cellulosics, polyester and small volume fibre types such as elastane (spandex), aramids and carbon fibres.
In addition, cellulosic fibres continued to grow faster than synthetics. While synthetic fibre output grew by 7.9%, cellulosic fibre production rose by 9.0%ódue predominantly to an increase in viscose staple fibre production.
Having said that, the volume of synthetic fibre manufactured is far in excess of cellulosic fibre production. Indeed, at 40.4 mn tons, synthetic fibre production in 2007 was almost 11 times the 3.7 mn tons of cellulosic fibres produced.