Let us take a quick look at the key figures for this core market: in 2015, the German plastics and rubber industry reported total sales of nearly EUR 105 billion. With a workforce of about 470,000 employees, this industry is one of the most important economic segments and it represents 6% of the domestic industrial production. PlasticsEurope reports that in 2015, 18.5 million tonnes of plastics were produced in Germany. Plastics producers reported a sales total of EUR 24.4 billion. Over the last few years, both output rates and turnover figures remained relatively stable and showed only minor fluctuations. The resource base's diminishing competiveness, and rising energy costs adversely affected the competitiveness of many German production sites.
Plastics and rubber machinery manufacturers in German-speaking regions have been maintaining their leading position in machine and processing technology. In 2015, German manufacturers recorded a total production value of EUR 7.0 billion for core machinery, which is even more than the result recorded for the record year of 2013. Representing 20.7% of global production, they were only outperformed by China (32.5%) but ranged far ahead of Italy, which came third with 7.8%. In international trade, German machinery manufacturers reported a total export value of EUR 4.7 billion, which represented 22% of international export, outperforming China (15%), Japan and Italy (both 9%).
In 2015, German plastics processors posted total sales of EUR 59.8 billion. The overall processing volume amounted to about 13.6 million tonnes. German rubber processors reported a total processing volume of 1.56 million tonnes of rubber and total revenues of EUR 11.56 billion.
Like its competitors from all over the world, the German processing industry is eager to see the new developments and advancements presented at this year's K trade fair, so as to explore the potential of additional plastics and rubber applications with new material formulations, new machines and equipment.
Plastics and rubber with excellent global growth perspectives
Polymer industry 583