Report Details

Global Polyethylene Market (by Demand, Production, Product Density, Application, & Region): Insights and Forecast with Potential Impact of COVID-19 (2022-2027)

  • Published: 4th Oct 2023
  • Pages: 199
  • Format : Pdf

Market Insight:

The most prevalent form of plastic on the earth is polyethylene, sometimes known as polythene. This is another typical polymer that is made chemically from ethylene. Polyethylene is used in a variety of products, including plastic containers, films, and bags, since it can be readily remolded after being melted into liquid.

Most countries' growth and expansion of businesses such as electrical and electronics, packaged food and drinks, and automotive are projected to have an influence on the worldwide polyethylene market. In coming years, demand for polyethylene would be influenced by an increase in disposable income and an increase in single-person households. The global polyethylene market is likely to escalate to US$153.89 billion in 2023, growing at a CAGR of 4.87%, during the forecast period. Also, global polyethylene market by demand is anticipated to reach 118.72 million tonnes in 2023. 

Segment Covered:     

  • By Product Density: In terms of product density, the report identifies three segments of the global polyethylene market: High Density Polyethylene (HDPE), Low Density Polyethylene (LDPE) and Linear Low Density Polyethylene (LLDPE). The High Density Polyethylene (HDPE) segment held the maximum share of the polyethylene market. The HDPE market experienced growth in the historical years, due to several factors such as expanding end-use industry, growing demand for polyethylene and rise in technological advancements in production of HDPE.
  • By Application: The report provides the bifurcation of the global polyethylene market into five applications: Packaging, Construction, Household, Agriculture and Others. Packaging segment held the highest share in the global polyethylene market. The growing food and beverages industry and growing concern towards the environment is primarily boosting the demand for polyethylene packaging.    

Geographic Coverage: 

According to this report, the global polyethylene market can be divided into four major regions: Asia Pacific, North America, Europe, and Rest of the World. The countries covered in North America region are the US, Canada and Mexico, while Europe includes Germany, UK, France, Spain, Italy and Rest of Europe. Moreover, China, Japan, India, South Korea and Rest of Asia Pacific are included in the Asia Pacific region. 

The Asia Pacific polyethylene market enjoyed the largest market share, primarily owing to inexpensive and affordable quality of polyethylene to most producers who use polyethylene as a raw material for other plastic products. While China continues to be a prominent region of Asia Pacific’s polyethylene market, accounting for the rising trend of online purchase of goods and rapid industrialization leading to a surge in demand for packaging material. 

Top Impacting Factors:

Growth Drivers

  • Upsurge in E-Commerce Sales  
  • Escalating Single-Person Households  
  • Increase in Demand for Packaged Food
  • Surging Application of Polyethylene in Agriculture      


  • Fluctuating Crude Oil Prices 
  • Degrading Impact on Environment       


  • Rising Cultivation of Cannabis (Hemp & Marijuana) 
  • Increasing Demand for Plastic Films        

Driver: Upsurge in E-Commerce Sales

The invention of modern technology coupled with powerful internet connectivity led to a significant rise in global e-commerce sales. Rise in demand for polyethylene is directly influenced by surging e-commerce sales because e-commerce created higher demand for protective packaging, plastic wraps and plastic films as a measure of global security efforts. These products include polyethylene as a primary component in their manufacturing. Therefore, the rise in production of polyethylene was experienced as a result of surging demand from e-commerce.

  • Challenge: Degrading Impact on Environment

Consumption of polyethylene or polythene is increasing day by day and it can be seen that it is being used in almost every activity of life. With the rising usage of polyethylene, the pollution caused by it is also increasing and affecting almost every kind of environment including terrestrial and aquatic. The environmental impact of polyethylene can be seen on the following five categories: aquatic, forests, tundra, grasslands and deserts. The degrading effects of polyethylene on all these categories can be detected. It has become a serious threat for all types of terrestrial ecosystems. In urban areas polyethylene is a major concern for both environment and public hygiene. Therefore, various devastating impacts of polyethylene on the environment are expected to act as a threat to the market, since consumers are becoming more environment conscious.  

  • Trend: Increasing Demand for Plastic Films

The demand for plastic films is expected to positively impact polyethylene market as it is utilized in the plastic film manufacturing process. Plastic films are used in various applications such as plastic bags, packaging, photographic film and labels. These films are preferred over rigid packaging materials due to its various advantages like lightweight, good barrier properties, recyclable and reusable. Food industry is known to be the largest consumer of plastic films, in accordance with rising demand for ready-to-eat foods, frozen meals, cake mixes and snacks. Moreover, use of plastic films in pharmaceuticals and e-commerce industry is also predicted to rise, thereby, significantly impacting the growth of polyethylene market.   

The COVID-19 Analysis: 

The outbreak of the COVID-19 pandemic increased polyethylene use. The quick development in demand for online sales channels in numerous industries such as food and beverages, consumer goods, and pharmaceuticals has greatly boosted polyethylene packaging use. Polyethylene's versatility, strength, low cost, and light weight made it a popular packaging material, particularly for food and beverage products. Furthermore, the fast rise of online food delivery services has greatly increased demand for polyethylene packaging. Polyethylene has negative environmental effects, yet its use is predicted to increase significantly due to its widespread use in numerous industries throughout the world.

 Analysis of Key Players:    

The polyethylene market is fragmented with the presence of few number of players dominating worldwide. Key players of the polyethylene market are:

  • LyondellBasell Industries, 
  • The Dow Chemical Company, 
  • Borealis AG, 
  • Repsol Group, 
  • ExxonMobil Corporation,
  • SABIC,  
  • INEOS Group Holdings S.A., 
  • MOL Group, 
  • Braskem S.A, 
  • LG Corporation (LG Chem Ltd.), 
  • Borouge,
  • Chevron Phillips Chemical Co.
  • China Petrochemical Corporation (SINOPEC),  
  • Formosa Plastics Corp
  • Reliance Industries Limited

In July 2020, Dow Chemicals and Thong Guan collaborated to introduce new bio-based product series of polyethylene that targeted to serve the Asia Pacific region’s rapidly growing demand for the polyethylene. Also, In May 2020, UPM Raflatac introduced its new line of Forest Film products, which is produced from the post-consumer recycled plastics and it is used in the packaging of products. This strategy aimed at reducing the carbon footprint that will also provide a competitive advantage to the company.

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