Leaders of the Japanese injection molding machinery sector and other local plastic industry heavyweights were out in force a few nights back at a reception organized by NPE organizer SPI: The Plastics Industry Trade Association (Washington, DC) coinciding with the IPF show in Japan. SPI President and CEO Bill Carteaux welcomed almost 90 industry players to the event.
Thanking those who participated in NPE2009 during the height of the global recession, Carteaux noted that this turned out to be a turning point for the plastics market in the U.S. as sales in all sectors began to grow after the show. He also noted that, "Contrary to everything you may read in the press, the United States plastics market continues to do well. We continue to see growth in many markets...unless of course you are in housing."
Overall U.S. plastic shipments were up to $341 billion in 2010 according to Carteaux, ranking plastics as the country's second largest manufacturing sector after auto. He added that a favorable exchange rate, and reduced rates for natural gas due to all of the new shale deposits that have been found bode very well for our exports. "For the first half of the year exports were up 11% over 2010, which was a very strong year," he added. "We had a trade surplus as an industry of over $17 billion last year, and China continues to be our third largest export market behind Canada and Mexico."...