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Asia is booming in packaging

Growth potential is huge. In 2007 the per-capita consumption of packaging was as low as U$ 15 – as against an international average of US$ 100. Rising incomes drive consumption while organised retail is growing with super and hypermarkets as well as modern shopping centres. Food and pharmaceutical industries are growing fast.

The Indian food market is estimated to total US$ 182 billion according to the “India
Food Report 2009” published by Research and Markets. Consultants McKinsey & Co. expect food retail turnover to grow from the current US$ 70 billion mark to 150 billion by 2025. In the pharmaceutical industry average annual growth of 16% is forecast until 2012. The market volume is said to stand at approx. US$ 7.3 billion at present. The Indian packaging industry is still in its infancy. Many domestic products are still retailed in very simple packaging. For competitive reasons, however, Indian companies are also placing increasing emphasis on attractive and hygienic packaging. This promises enormous potential for the future.

Another case study: Vietnamese exporters make ever higher demands on the suppliers of printed materials and packaging products. Add to this the rising backlog demand on the domestic market. Things are looking good for expansion and modernisation. As a result, there are more business opportunities arising for foreign machinery suppliers in this sector.

The driving force for modernisation projects in the Vietnamese printing and packaging industry are primarily the exporters; and the demand for printing machines is exclusively covered by imports. The required equipment comes primarily from Germany, Japan, Korea, the USA, India and China. Domestic printing press production is not in sight in the foreseeable future. Furthermore, Vietnamese printed materials are often still of a low quality. Positive momentum is expected from customers who produce packaging, manual or operating instructions for export. Companies such as Canon assemble and package for the world market in Vietnam and tolerate no deviations in terms of colour or other elements from their specifications.

So far most companies here lacked both the know-how for achieving better results and the funds required for the necessary investment. So some movement can be expected here. Germany Trade and Invest estimates that the market will be divided in two: well-equipped, export-focused print shops on the one hand, and those serving the domestic market with the cheapest products possible, on the other.