Business outlook

We consult our member companies every quarter about their assessment of the economic situation. The result is the IK Economic Trend. It is regarded as the barometer of the plastics packaging industry. The individual working groups define benchmarks whose results are only made available to participating member businesses.

We also publish production statistics and international trade statistics. Please contact us in case you are interested in any material.

231229 Charts Konjunkturtrend 1Q2024 WUE EN01

Source: IK; Balance: share of positive reports
minus share of negative reports

International trade

International trade in films1 and plastics packaging2 2021/2022 (in € million)

Imports Exports
2021 2022 Change in % 2021/2022 2021 2022 Change in % 2021/2022
Films
LDPE 654 772 18,0 974 1.058 8,6
HDPE 131 160 22,1 477 527 10,5
Ethylene copolymers / others 269 330 22,7 767 838 9,3
PP 751 913 21,6 1.150 1.234 7,3
PS 153 172 12,4 375 385 2,7
PET + polyester 419 475 13,4 725 822 13,4
Regen. cellulose3 11 15 36,4 3 3 0,0
Cellulose acetate 7 6 -14,3 14 14 0,0
PA 47 51 8,5 100 118 18,0
PC 126 123 -2,4 127 128 0,8
Packaging
Cups, containers, buckets, cases 782 769 -1,7 1.154 1.276 10,6
Bags, pouches, sacks etc. made from:
   PE 718 903 25,8 939 1.049 11,7
   PVC 12 12 0,0 10 13 30,0
   Other plastics 268 264 -1,5 256 267 4,3
Bottles
   < 2l 502 628 25,1 538 557 3,5
   > 2l 104 117 12,5 240 257 7,1
Closures 607 685 12,9 1.041 1.136 9,1
Other transport packages 626 710 13,4 642 734 14,3
Total 6.187 7.105 14,8 9.532 10.416 9,3

1) Films, boards, sheets 2) Excerpts
3) Preliminary values. The Federal Statistical Office assumes an incorrectly reported commodity code.
Source: Destatis; Last updated: February 2023

Production

Production for plastics packaging and packaging films in Germany 2023:

Packaging categories Volume in 1,000 t Change Sales in € million Change
2022 2023 in % 2022 2023 in %
Packaging films 1.612 1.412 -12,4 6.564 5.620 -14,4
Pouches, carrier bags, sacks 460 395 -14,1 1.607 1.464 -8,9
Cups, containers, cases, crates, pallets 771 706 -8,5 3.346 3.261 -2,5
Bottles 599 576 -3,7 2.515 2.427 -3,5
   PET bottles 421 405 -3,7 No breakdown into PET
and other plastics
   Bottles, other plastics 178 171 -3,8
Closures 312 293 -6,2 1.637 1.630 -0,4
Barrels, canisters, buckets 262 230 -12,2 1.349 1.245 -7,7
Other 218 198 -9,3 1.177 1.147 -2,5
Total 4.234 3.810 -10,0 18.196 16.794 -7,7

Source: GVM, IK, Destatis; Last updated: February 2024

Recycling statistics

Our association intends to reach the ambitious targets of one million tonnes of recyclates (or renewable raw materials) in use and a proportion of 90 per cent of recyclable and reusable plastic household packages by 2025.

We will only achieve these targets if recycling plastic is available in the required quantities and qualities and there is the corresponding demand from our customers. We ensure the quality of progress by means of regular monitoring.