Japan’s Technical Textile Industry Is Growing Again after Years of Decline19 May 2011 • by Natalie Aster
Man-made fibre and technical textile production in Japan rose in 2010 for the first time in several years. Furthermore, it could increase again in the coming years as demand for materials for reconstruction surges following the earthquake and tsunami which hit the north-east of the country in March 2011. On the negative side, the technical textile industry is likely to suffer from lower demand for materials for the Japanese automotive industry as a result of a sharp fall in car production since the earthquake.
These are among the findings in a report in the latest issue of Technical Textile Markets - a quarterly publication from the global business information company Textiles Intelligence Ltd. The report “Statistics: Fibre Consumption for Technical Textiles in Japan, April 2011 Edition” includes statistical data and analysis of the Japanese man-made fibre and technical textile industry under the following headings: man-made fibre production and consumption; man-made fibre consumption for technical applications; and production of technical textiles. It also includes an outlook for the Japanese technical textile industry, and contains a wealth of recently released data for 2010.
Production of synthetic fibres rose by an impressive 21% in 2010, representing the first increase in ten years. Capacity utilisation also rose sharply.
Production of nonwoven fabric rose by 11%, industrial textile goods by 5% and spunbonded fabric by 13%. In the case of cellulosic fibres, production rose by 11%, taking output to its highest level since 2002.
Statistics: Fibre Consumption for Technical Textiles in Japan, April 2011 Edition
Published: April 2011
Price: US$ 520.00
To some extent, the recovery in Japanese fibre and technical textile production reflects inventory replenishment following the global economic crisis. In fact the 21% hike in synthetic fibre production in 2010 followed a 24% drop in 2009.
Also, the prospects for 2011 are somewhat uncertain because of the disruption to production caused by earthquake damage and the resulting tsunami in March 2011. More significantly, electricity is in short supply because of the shutdown of the nuclear power plant in Fukushima.
But on the positive side there are likely to be some short-term gains for the industry as reconstruction progresses. This will lead to a significant rise in the demand for technical textiles for buildings and civil engineering projects.
Over the medium to long term, however, such production is unlikely to be sustainable. Instead, the future of the Japanese technical textile industry will lie in the manufacture of niche, value-added fibres owing to growing competition in the case of basic commodity technical textiles from low cost countries such as China. Interestingly, Japanese production of minor synthetic filament yarns -- which include acrylic, aramid, elastane and vinylon -- surged by 155% to a record level in 2010.
More information can be found in the report “Statistics: Fibre Consumption for Technical Textiles in Japan, April 2011 Edition” by Textiles Intelligence Ltd.
Other reports published in the same issue include:
- “Sustainability is Driving Innovation in Nonwovens Technology”,
- “Profile of ILC Dover: a Pioneer in Advanced Textiles for Space and the US Military”,
- “The World Nonwovens Industry: Part 3 of 3;Ten Smaller Producers”,
- “Nanotechnology in Technical Textiles and Apparel”,
- “Global Technical Textiles Business Update, 1st quarter 2011”.
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