Prospects for Thailand’s packaging exports are promising, driven by the growing e-commerce market and rising demand for consumer goods and health products — especially recycled, environmentally friendly and health-conscious packaging — amid Covid-19.
Phusit Ratanakul Sereroengrit, director-general of Trade Policy and Strategy Office (TPSO) under the Commerce Ministry, said a study by his office noticed that the growing e-commerce market and surge in demand for consumer goods and health products is driving demand for packaging.
The higher demand is in line with recovery in many countries, he said.
Thailand is the largest exporter of packaging in Asean. The country’s packaging exports rose by 11.2% year-on-year to US$844.8 million (27.7 billion baht) in the first quarter of 2021.
Thailand’s biggest export market is the US, making up $123.6 million in the first quarter; an increase of 13.8%, followed by Japan worth $122.6 million, up 6.6%; Vietnam worth $78.7 million, up 21.6%; Indonesia worth $72.7 million, an increase of 20.9%; and China worth $51 million, an increase of 7.2%.
The main export products are plastic packaging which account for 78.2% of the total export volume.
Packaging businesses have to respond to consumer concerns on environmental friendliness and health, amid Covid-19 pandemic.
Mr Phusit attributed Thailand’s strength in packaging to better quality compared to competitors such as Vietnam, Malaysia and Indonesia.
“The prospects of the global packaging business are promising, with the world market forecast to grow by 7.5% a year from 2019 to 2027. Thai entrepreneurs and manufacturers should ramp up their competitiveness and cash in on this growing market,” Mr Phusit said.
“The important factors that Thai manufacturers and entrepreneurs should be concerned about in particular are changes in consumer behaviour during the Covid-19 pandemic,” Mr Phusit added.