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Polymer Market: see the scenario and expectations for 2022

Find out how much the polymer market has generated in recent years and see some factors that may influence the sector in 2022.

Polypropylene and polyethylene are polymers made from versatile resins that are present in almost all production chains. Precisely because they are so widely used, in recent years they have been showing good numbers. In fact, the injection molded plastics market is expected to grow at an annual rate of 4.6% between 2021 and 2029.

Want to know more about the polymer market in Brazil? Keep reading.

Polymer market in Brazil

In Brazil, the consumption of polymers shows great expansion. The consumption of polypropylene, for example, has been growing by 6.5% per year. Part of this is especially due to the versatility of inputs derived from plastic, which, due to this and other characteristics, make it a good option to replace materials such as steel, wood, and rubber.

After all, polymers offer numerous advantages. The main ones include:

  • Low cost;
  • Reduced weight;
  • High resistance;
  • Wide variety of formats and colors.

Not to mention that, in many cases, the performance and durability of polymers are also greater than those of the original inputs. That is, in practice, they offer greater efficiency at reduced cost.

Data on the industry

If the polymer industry shows steady growth, it is clear that other data on the industry are also positive. According to the Brazilian Plastic Industry Association (Abiplast), in 2020, the sector had 12,151 companies. Consequently, in 2021, this industry was responsible for 349,928 jobs.

With regard to the physical production of the sector, in general, 7.1 million tons were calculated in 2021. These numbers led to a turnover of BRL R$127.5 billion. However, compared to 2020, physical production had a retraction of -1.8%. In this comparison, only tubes and accessories for construction work showed positive numbers, with an increase of 9.4%.

Where are these polymers used?

As we said earlier, polypropylene and polyethylene are part of many production chains. The packaging industry is an example, as it manufactures soft drink lids, seals, freezer containers, among others.

The textile industry is also one of those using these polymers. In fact, polypropylene is one of the most used fabrics in the textile fiber segment.

Polymers are also present in the production of:

  • Tanks;
  • Toys;
  • Cutlery handles;
  • Food boards;
  • Food packaging;
  • Non-stick coating;
  • And much more.

Scenario during the pandemic

It is practically impossible to talk about the polymer market without mentioning the coronavirus pandemic. After all, like other sectors, this industry also suffered during this period.

There were practically two years of shortages in the market. After all, during this period, the consumption of packaging for cleaning products, masks and hospital clothes grew exponentially. This caused a lack of raw material, in the face of such demand.

Consequently, prices also rose. In 2021, resins underwent a 45% readjustment. And, in the entire pandemic, they passed 80%.


When it was finally possible to see some stability in the market, especially due to vaccines and the resumption of trade, the sector faced a new obstacle: inflation and high interest rates.

It is not difficult to see how these two factors influence the industry. After all, inflation reduces purchasing power. As a result, consumption shrinks.

But that is not all. In 2022, there are also other factors that may influence the polymer market. The main ones are the elections and the War in Ukraine. After all, polymers are made from petroleum-derived resins. At the same time, polypropylene, polyethylene and other plastics are commodities. Therefore, if the price of oil rises in the international market, the domestic market is also affected.

However, even with a scenario of uncertainties, one thing is certain: the forecasts for 2022 remain positive. After all, the expectation is that these difficulties, especially with regard to the shortage of inputs caused by the pandemic, will have stabilized in the first quarter of this year. With this, the market can look with greater enthusiasm for the coming months.

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