2008 and 2009 were difficult years for the composites industry, Lucintel explains. Demand for composite materials dropped significantly in 2008 and 2009 but recovered in 2010 with 10.3% growth. The construction, automotive, marine and electrical / electronics segments had positive global impact in 2010.

According to the Lucintel report, Growth Opportunities in the Global Composites Industry 2011-2016, the worst performing markets in 2010 were pipe and tank, and wind energy. However, wind energy is expected to rebound, and along with marine and aerospace, is expected to see double digit growth in 2011.

The study predicts that future markets will be more fragmented due to growth in emerging economies. Population growth, new infrastructure projects, increasing urbanisation, a growing middle class population, and the green movement will drive composites growth in the future. New competitors are expected to surface as a result of this anticipated regional growth.

Lucintel expects rapid growth of carbon fibre reinforced plastics (CFRP) compared to glass fibre reinforced plastic (GRP) products. It reports that in last 15 years, the market for GRP grew by about 30%, while the market for carbon fibre composite products grew by about 250%. A similar trend is expected in the coming years, with CFRP product growth outpacing GRP.