The global demand for glass fiber increased by 5% in Q1 2021 from Q4 2020, while it grew by 9% when compared to Q1 2020. Glass fiber prices, on an average, increased about 25% in Q1 2021 when compared to Q4 2020. Price increase is due to gap in demand and supply and increasing demand of glass fiber in PCB, wind energy, construction, and other consumer applications while major suppliers are not adding new capacities in 2021. The first quarter result was positively influenced by a stronger than expected increase in demand, especially from the construction industry. The figure below depicts the change in demand and the price of glass fiber in the past five quarters.
Figure 1: Global Quarterly Glass Fiber Shipment and Price Trends
The North American glass fiber market experienced increase in demand in Q1 2021 from Q4 2020 with the increase in consumption from various end use industries including, automotive, marine, and construction. Raw material prices continue to increase in the Q1 2021 started from the third quarter 2020 from their lowest point in April 2020. The price of glass fiber increased by more than 24% in Q1 2021 when compared to Q4 2020.
The North American glass fiber market grew in Q4 2020 from Q3 2020 positively impacted by the increase in demand from various end use industries including, automotive, marine, and construction. The resumption of operations by major OEMs and related business activities resulted in a recovery of the supply chain, lessening the impact of COVID-19. Glass fiber demand continued to recover across various end use industries like transportation, housing & infrastructure, and marine. Companies in this sector began functioning normally during the third and fourth quarter of 2020, which resulted in increased demand and stable supply.
In Q1 2021, the European glass fiber market registered increase in demand from primary markets like automotive, marine, and construction. This increase in demand across all sectors, combined with the decreased raw material supplies from the force majeure challenges in the supply chain, led to a significant increase in raw material prices, as well as supply shortages.
In Q1 2021, demand for glass fiber started moving upward due to recovery of China's local market, especially the automotive and wind industry, has caused a rebound in strong demand for glass fiber. Glass fiber shortage is due to domestic demand, which is up in China by 35% compared to last year.
The price and demand analysis on above is published monthly for various regions. Lucintel analysts collect supply, demand and price data from various suppliers and consumers on a monthly basis and also analyzes news on supply and demand issues, production, and price trends. This allows Lucintel to publish unbiased assessments on price and demand movements to help you make confident business decisions on your negotiation or business issues.
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