Due to the steady growth in demand for plastic products and machinery in Africa, Africa has become a major player in the international plastics and packaging industry.
According to industry reports, in the past six years, the use of plastic products in Africa has increased by an astonishing 150%, with a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of approximately 8.7%. During this period, plastic hangers entering Africa increased by 23% to 41%. In a recent conference report, analysts predicted that in East Africa alone, the use of plastics is expected to triple in the next five years.
The consumer demand for plastic products in Kenya grows by an average of 10%-20% every year. The comprehensive economic reforms led to the overall economic development of the sector, and subsequently improved the disposable income of the rising middle class in Kenya. As a result, Kenya’s imports of plastics and resins have grown steadily in the past two years. In addition, Kenya’s position as a regional business and distribution center in sub-Saharan Africa will further help the country to promote its growing plastics and packaging industry.
Some well-known companies in Kenya’s plastics and packaging industry include:
Dodhia Packaging Limited
Statpack Industries Limited
East African Packaging Industries Limited (EAPI)
As a landlocked country, Uganda imports most of its plastics and packaging products from regional and international suppliers and has become the main importer of plastics in East Africa. The main imported products include plastic molded furniture, plastic household products, woven bags, ropes, plastic shoes, PVC pipes/fittings/electrical fittings, plumbing and drainage systems, plastic building materials, toothbrushes and plastic household products.
Kampala, Uganda's commercial center, has become the center of the packaging industry because more and more manufacturers are establishing in and outside the city to meet the growing demand for plastic products such as tableware, household plastic bags, and toothbrushes. One of the larger players in the Uganda plastics industry is Nice House of Plastics, which was founded in 1970 and is a company that produces toothbrushes. Today, the company is a Ugandan manufacturer of plastic products, various writing instruments and toothbrushes.
In East Africa, one of the markets for plastic and packaging products is Tanzania. In the past five years, the country has gradually become a lucrative market for plastic products in East Africa.
Tanzania’s plastic imports include plastic consumer products, writing instruments, ropes, plastic and metal spectacle frames, packaging materials, biomedical products, kitchen utensils, woven bags, pet supplies, gifts and other plastic products.
In recent years, Ethiopia has also become a major importer of plastic products and machinery, including plastic molds, plastic film molds, plastic packaging materials, kitchen plastic products, pipes and accessories.
Ethiopia adopted a free market economy policy in 1992. Some foreign companies have established joint ventures with Ethiopian partners to establish and operate plastic manufacturing plants in Addis Ababa.
There is no doubt that South Africa is one of the larger players in the African market in terms of the plastics and packaging industries. Currently, the South African plastics market is valued at approximately US$3 billion-including raw materials and products. South Africa accounts for 0.7% of the world market, and its per capita plastic consumption is about 22 kg. Another notable feature of South Africa's plastics industry is that plastic recycling and environmentally friendly plastics also have a place in South Africa's plastics industry. Approximately 13% of the original plastics are recycled every year.
With the continuous development of the plastics industry, China's export volume of plastic additives and masterbatch is increasing.
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