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The global pulp and paper market size was valued at USD 351.53 billion in 2021 and is projected to grow from USD 354.39 billion in 2022 to USD 372.70 billion by 2029, exhibiting a CAGR of 0.72% during the forecast period. The global COVID-19 pandemic has been unprecedented and staggering, with pulp and paper experiencing lower-than-anticipated demand across all regions compared to pre-pandemic levels. Based on our analysis, the global market exhibited a decline of 0.1% in 2020 as compared to 2019.
This industry is important and forest-based and the largest industry in the world. The industry manufactures pulp and paper products mainly from wood and other materials such as bamboo, rice husk, wheat straw, and others. The main products include wrapping paper, paper packaging material, writing paper, printing paper, tissue paper, rolls, specialty papers, and others. This industry is labor-intensive and plays a vital role in socio-economic as well as sustainable environmental development. However, the global industry faces growth challenges with increasing digitization and fluctuation in raw material availability.
Leading FMCG companies have started adopting paper-based packaging solutions to meet sustainable goals. For instance, in June 2021, Unilever, in association with Pulpex Consortium, launched the world's first paper bottle for laundry detergent solutions. The bottle was designed to reduce plastic use and promote recyclability. Such initiatives by big market players are projected to positively impact the pulp and paper industry in the near future.
COVID-19 Pandemic to Increase Demand for Tissue Paper in Healthcare Sector
Though extended lockdowns amid COVID-19 have resulted in disruption of supply chains and production of pulp and paper around the world, demand for hygiene & personal care products, including tissue paper, increased. Leading global tissue manufacturers are focusing on meeting the continually rising demand for tissue papers from hospitals & other healthcare facilities. For instance, Kimberly-Clark Corporation increased the production of toilet papers and donated the same to combat COVID-19. Also, COVID-19 is creating opportunities to develop antimicrobial tissue products that can effectively fight such pandemics. Other categories, such as printing & writing and news print, were adversely affected during the pandemic due to continuous falling demand from the end-users.
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Rapid Penetration of Online Retail in Emerging Economies to Fuel Demand for Paper Packaging
Rapid penetration of the internet & smartphones has increased online retailing in emerging economies such as China, India, Brazil, Southeast Asian countries, and others. Consumers, especially at a younger age, are buying groceries, food, cosmetics, and many other goods online. According to India Brand Equity Foundation, online shoppers are projected to reach 220 million by 2025.
Paper packaging is lightweight & convenient for logistics. Also, the increasing need for sustainability in retail packaging to reduce the adverse effect of plastic packaging waste pushes demand for paper passed packaging products. Therefore, with rapid online retailing, demand for corrugated boxes and paper bags is expected to increase during the forecast period.
Increasing Demand for Eco-friendly Packaging Material to Drive the Market
Paper is the most sustainable and recyclable packaging material available in the world today. Owing to rising environmental concerns, consumers and manufacturers are shifting their preferences to more ecological paper packaging solutions. Chief cosmetics, food, and FMCG companies are continuously engaging with paper manufacturers to develop advanced paper packaging solutions to meet their commitments toward sustainability. For instance, in 2019, L'Oréal group, in association with Albea Group, launched paper-based cosmetic tubes. In 2019, Nestle S.A. started to launch its products in recyclable paper packaging as a part of the company's commitment to make100% of its packaging products recyclable by the end of 2025. This is expected to bolster the pulp and paper market growth during the forecast period.
Raw Materials & Resource Management to Hinder Market Growth
Paper industries consume a considerable amount of wood from forests. According to the Food and Agricultural Organization, from 2000 to 2015, there was a net decrease in the forest area of 3.3 million hectares. Also, governments mandated strict regulations on the sourcing of wood from forests. In addition, paper is one of the largest water-consuming industries. In general, to manufacture A4 size paper sheets, manufacturers need around 20 liters of water. Therefore, with increasing deforestation & water crisis, managing continuous raw material & resource supply is a key challenge for the growth of the market.
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Wrapping & Packaging Segment to Hold Largest Share of Global Market
Owing to the increased adoption of paper-based packaging materials, the wrapping & packaging segment is projected to lead the market in the near future. Rapid penetration of the e-commerce and retail sector worldwide has created a huge demand for both wrapping & packaging paper. For instance, demand for paper bags has increased as a potential & cheap substitute for plastic bags. Also, with rising environmental awareness, both consumers and manufacturers in developing economies are adopting paper packaging products.
The sanitary segment is projected to register healthy growth during the forecast period, backed by rising disposable income and awareness of personal hygiene in emerging economies. Printing & writing and news print segments are declining in developed countries due to increasing emphasis on digitization & digital marketing.
Asia Pacific Pulp and Paper Market Size, 2021 (USD Billion)
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Asia Pacific was the leading consumer of paper globally and is expected to lead the global market throughout the forecast period. Asia Pacific market size was USD 175.00 billion in 2021. China is the leading producer and consumer of pulp and paper in the world. China's per capita paper consumption is around 76 kg, which is higher than the global per capita paper consumption of 55 kg. In Asia Pacific, India is projected to register strong growth due to increasing demand for paper-based products. Southeast Asian countries are also projected to indicate positive growth during the forecast period. Healthier economic growth backed by improving lifestyles in Vietnam, Indonesia, and Malaysia is expected to create potential opportunities for paper-based products.
North America and Europe have matured markets for paper products and are expected to grow at a slow CAGR during the forecast period. The presence of large-scale companies, such as International Paper, Georgia-Pacific Corporation, and WestRock, is creating a competitive environment in the U.S., owing to the rising consumption of fast-moving consumer products, thereby leading to increasing demand for packaging paper in the United States However, the printing & writing and news print segments are projected to indicate falling demand over the forecast period.
Europe is the second-largest consumer of paper in the global market. Also, the region holds the second-largest share in the production of paper. Recycling paper-based products to achieve sustainable goals is the key trend in the market.
Latin America is expected to show positive growth in the global market during the forecast period. In Latin America, Mexico is expected to register the fastest growth in the market. Increasing merger & acquisition activities and investment in the paper packaging sector increase the demand for paper in Mexico. Though per capita paper packaging consumption in Mexico is less than in the United States and many European countries, paper packaging consumption is expected to increase rapidly in the next decade.
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In the Middle East & Africa, GCC and South Africa are expected to provide growth opportunities for paper-based products on the back of the growing paper and packaging industry.
Sustainability to Lead Companies to Gain Competitive Edge in Market
Efficient use of resources to meet increasing demand from consumers is an important factor in this industry. All leading paper producers are engaged in balancing the supply-demand scenario in the global paper industry. Currently, through its subsidiaries, the U.S.-based International Paper is the leading producer of paper in the world. The company offers different paper grades such as commercial printing papers, converting papers, digital papers, office papers, and specialty papers. The company is committed to strengthening people's lives by using available resources responsibly & efficiently.
An Infographic Representation of Pulp and Paper Market
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The report provides both qualitative & quantitative insights into the global market. Quantitative insights include the global market share and analysis in terms of value (USD Billion) & volume (Million Tons) across each segment, sub-segment, and regions profiled in the scope of the study. Also, the report covers market share analysis and growth rates of segments, sub-segments, and key countries across each region. Qualitative insight covers an elaborative analysis of market drivers, restraints, growth opportunities, and pulp and paper industry trends related to the market overview. The competitive landscape section covers detailed company profiling of the key players operating in this industry.
Value (USD Billion), Volume (Million Tons)
By Category and Geography
Fortune Business Insights says that the global market size was USD 351.53 billion in 2021 and is projected to reach USD 372.70 billion by 2029.
Growing at a CAGR of 0.72%, the market will exhibit steady growth in the forecast period.
The wrapping & packaging segment is expected to lead the global market during the forecast period.
Increasing demand for eco-friendly packaging & personal care products to drive market growth.
Leading players operating in the market are International Paper, Georgia Pacific Corporation, Nine Dragon Paper Ltd., Stora Enso Oyj, Sappi Ltd., Kimberly Clark Corporation, UPM-Kymmene Oyj, Svenska Cellulosa Aktiebolaget (SCA), Oji Holding Corporation, Nippon Paper Industries Co., Ltd., the Smurfit Kappa Group, and WestRock.
Asia Pacific dominated the global market in 2021.
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