GCC (Gulf Cooperation Council) Flexible Packaging Market Size & Share Analysis - Growth Trends & Forecasts (2023 - 2028)


The GCC (Gulf Cooperation Council) flexible packaging market is anticipated to register a CAGR of 6.32% over the forecast period. Economic expansion and increased disposable incomes among the workforce are expected to drive market growth in the region during the forecast period.

New York, May 25, 2023 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- announces the release of the report "GCC (Gulf Cooperation Council) Flexible Packaging Market Size & Share Analysis - Growth Trends & Forecasts (2023 - 2028)" -

Key Highlights
The GCC is considered one of the critical markets for the packaging industry in the Middle Eastern region. The primary production industry of the area is the oil and gas sector, which drives most of the country’s business revenues. Increased output from various end-use industries, such as food, retail, consumer goods, pharmaceuticals, etc., will increase demand for flexible packaging in the country.
For instance, according to Saudi Arabia’s Ministry of Commerce and Industry, the soft drinks and beverage industries are now among some of the mature sectors in the country, constituting a vast majority of the food and beverage sectors’ exports. Most manufacturers are introducing additional functionalities of EVOH films for packaging. Functionalities, such as its cost-effectiveness and high seal strength, have displayed a trend in EVOH films for packaging. EVOH films are used for a food packaging solution, as they can successfully retain the properties of food products, thereby preventing contamination during shipments.
The increasing trend of consumer products such as food, beverages, and pharmaceuticals is expected to increase the demand for flexible packaging in the region. The growing need for convenient, portable packaging solutions drives increased demand. As the region becomes more urbanized, there is a higher focus on sustainability and convenience in packaging. The general trend to move to flexible packaging is to take advantage of processed food packages and adapt to changing lifestyles.
Additionally, urbanization and changing demographics have significantly impacted the packaging sector, which is progressively expanding. Additionally, it is affected by shifting consumer trends and behaviors. Changes in income patterns and the associated disposable income have impacted the demand for packaging materials across many sectors.
However, growing concerns regarding the environment and recycling in the region may restrain the market growth. The region faces a shortage of flexible packaging recycling facilities, which affects the development of proper recycling and the safe disposal of flexible packaging products.
Flexible packaging manufacturers in the area faced several difficulties due to the COVID-19 outbreak. The effects of the lockdown included disruptions in the supply chain, a scarcity of raw materials needed for production, a labor shortage, and changing prices that drove up the cost of production, shipping problems, and so on. Further, the Russia-Ukraine war impacted the overall packaging ecosystem in the GCC region.

GCC Flexible Packaging Market Trends

Rising Urbanization Rates and the Use of Organized Retails like Supermarkets and Hypermarkets are Driving the Market Growth

The continued rise in the levels of urbanization, a large expatriate population, and the changing dietary habits of the resident citizens have catalyzed the requirement. Due to the increasing penetration of organized retail formats, such as hypermarkets, supermarkets, and e-commerce, the region’s processed and packaged food sector is exhibiting a strong growth rate.
As the countries in GCC become more urbanized, there is a higher focus on sustainability and convenience in packaging. The general trend to move to flexible packaging is to take advantage of processed food packages and adapt to changing lifestyles.
According to Interpack, one of the leading packaging trade fairs, 5% of the world’s packaged goods are consumed in the Middle East, where business is expanding rapidly. The United Arab Emirates is one of the countries with the highest per capita consumer goods consumption in the world. Consumers prefer healthy food and beverages and pay attention to more sustainable packaging.
In addition, the rise of modern retail formats in the countries and the availability of a wider variety of frozen ready-to-eat foods has led to a significant increase in demand, attracting time-sensitive consumers looking for convenient groceries. Moreover, the growing influence of western eating habits among domestic consumers has increased the demand for packaged foods. It is further supported by a high proportion of immigrants, tourists, and young consumers driving demand for ready-to-eat, processed, and frozen foods.
Further, supermarkets and hypermarkets are overtaking the conventional retail sector as the need for packaged goods keeps rising. A growing population, an increase in disposable money, and the development and growth of metropolitan areas are the main forces behind this change. Total 2021 retail sales of packaged food were approximately USD 36.2 billion; of that amount, traditional channels generated 55%, while 45% came through modern retail channels.

Pharmaceutical and Medical Industry is Expected to Exhibit Significant Growth Rates

The UAE pharmaceutical industry is expanding quickly. Even though the UAE now imports most of its medications, this is starting to change due to partnerships between UAE businesses and some of the world’s prominent pharmaceutical corporations to produce goods locally. The COVID-19 pandemic shifted the UAE’s emphasis to investing in the biological sciences domestically and internationally.
According to ITC, in 2021, the imports of pharmaceutical products in the United Arab Emirates were valued at around USD 6.57 billion, a 47.84% rise in imports from the previous year, 2020, valued at about USD 4.44 billion. The significant increase in imports signifies the increasing demand for pharmaceutical products in the region, thereby creating demand for product packaging companies.
Further, the nation is establishing relationships with prominent international market participants to enhance its production of pharmaceutical items. The market is expected to expand the pharmaceutical market in the UAE further over the next five years through advantageous funding and distribution channel plans, a strategic position, and advanced logistical infrastructure. The initiative for local manufacturing also increases the demand for firms in flexible pharmaceutical packaging.
For instance, in June 2022, UAE-based capsule production and packaging facility Bioventure Healthcare FZE announced a new manufacturing partnership with global science-led UK healthcare business GlaxoSmithKline (GSK). GSK will transfer the secondary packaging of 20 of its most important products, including those for the central nervous system, dermatology, urology, allergy, and respiratory therapy, to the UAE through this partnership.
Furthermore, the growing demand for tamperproof packaging is driving the need for blister packaging, including features such as enhanced barrier protection and reduced packaging weight. The Saudi Arabian government has taken the initiative to strengthen and improve the pharma and healthcare sector in the region. For instance, according to ITA, in 2022, the Saudi government is expected to spend USD 36.8 billion on healthcare and social development, which accounts for 14.4 %of its 2022 budget, after education and military.

GCC Flexible Packaging Industry Overview

The GCC Flexible Packaging Market has a broad portfolio of suppliers from the local and international markets. This factor leads to high competition among the vendors. Due to the absence of multiple distribution channels, the vendors directly interact with the end-users to sell their products. This scenario leads to long-term deals with end-users. Hence, the vendors often choose to retain or make new clients through competitive pricing strategies. Additionally, as most of the packaging material is sourced from imports, there is high competition among the suppliers to capture a limited number of players in the market. This factor intensifies the competitive rivalry among local and foreign manufacturers.

Some prominent players in the market include Huhtamaki Flexibles UAE, ENPI Group, Arabian Packaging Co. LLC, Amber Packaging Industries LLC, and Rotopacking Materials Ind. Co. LLC, among others.

November 2022: A new manufacturing facility for Hotpack Global has opened in Qatar. The facility, which represents Hotpack’s global aim to lead the food packaging industry by 2030, is the company’s fifteenth factory that it owns and operates worldwide. The production facility, situated in Doha’s new industrial district, is a specialist factory that will create a wide range of Hotpack paper goods, including paper bags and cups. In addition to expanding its production and logistical operations, the firm has opened additional sales centers in Bahrain, Oman, and Saudi Arabia.
February 2022: Al Bayader International, a manufacturer, and provider of packaging and cleaning solutions in the UAE, announced a new business division created especially for the food industry. These solutions are a part of a more extensive portfolio of inventive food solutions that the new F&B division of the corporation has developed via intensive research and development. Al Bayader International’s food section expands its present F&B packaging business to offer a one-stop shop for the industry.

Additional Benefits:

The market estimate (ME) sheet in Excel format
3 months of analyst support
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