According to Messe Düsseldorf Asia, the plastics and rubber sectors in Thailand are experiencing significant growth due to the increasing global demand. This growth is closely linked to the expansion of the automotive industry, investments in infrastructure, and the high-value industrial groups involved in medical equipment manufacturing. In preparation for the upcoming International Trade Fair

 According to Messe Düsseldorf Asia, the plastics and rubber sectors in Thailand are experiencing significant growth due to the increasing global demand. This growth is closely linked to the expansion of the automotive industry, investments in infrastructure, and the high-value industrial groups involved in medical equipment manufacturing.

In preparation for the upcoming International Trade Fair for the Plastics and Rubber Industries, known as T-PLAS 2023, the global trade fair organizer aims to promote both industries and highlight Thailand’s significant role as a manufacturer on the global and regional stage. Scheduled to be held at BITEC Bangna between September 20 – 23, 2023, the event will prioritize the theme of recycling rubber and plastic to foster a circular economy.

Gernot Ringling, Managing Director at Messe Düsseldorf Asia, said: “Thailand has been identified through studies on economic growth as a country with a significant petrochemical industry, boasting high production potential in comparison to other ASEAN countries. This strength solidifies Thailand’s position as a crucial global hub for plastic production. The overall economic value of this industry in Thailand amounts to 1.0 trillion baht.”

He continued, “Apart from researching the plastics market, Messe Düsseldorf Asia also focuses on studying the rubber industry in Thailand. Rubber is also recognized as one of the key industries driving Thailand’s circular economy efforts. The processed rubber products from Thailand’s rubber industry are primarily exported for utilization in foreign countries’ rubber industries. The major export markets for these products include China, Malaysia, the United States, Japan, and India.”

“Furthermore, it has been discovered that the plastic product processing industry in Thailand is predominantly geared towards supporting the domestic market, while the remaining 20% of the market value is attributed to the export market. The main export destinations for Thai plastic products are within the ASEAN region, Japan, and the United States.”

Another interesting finding is that Thailand’s plastic processing industry comprises over 2,800 entrepreneurs, with most of them being small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs). The rest are large entrepreneurs who are actively involved in research and development efforts to enhance the efficiency of plastic pellets. These efforts are aimed at meeting the evolving demands of the global market while providing support to various continuous industries such as packaging, automotive parts, and medical tools and equipment.

In addition, Thailand holds the distinction of being the world’s second-largest producer of bioplastics, ranking just behind the United States. This is an intriguing aspect as it adds value to key cash crops such as sugar cane and cassava, aligning with the principles of the circular economy model known as Bio-Circular-Green (BCG).

The Thai rubber industry is expected to witness a steady growth in export volume, averaging between 3-4%, during the period of 2023-2024. This growth is attributed to the increasing global demand for processed rubber, primarily driven by the expansion of the automotive industry, investments in infrastructure, and the growing demand for medical equipment as well as the demand for rubber stocks in China and Japan.

However, the Thai rubber industry could potentially face competition from other competitors, particularly from the CLMV countries and China. These countries are anticipated to increase their rubber production and introduce more products to the market as these countries begin to cultivate their own rubber. (Source: The Bank of Ayudhya Research Center)

“Thailand’s adoption of the BCG economic model showcases its commitment to aligning with global trends. The Thai government has provided strong support for this economic framework. In response, business operators and manufacturers in Thailand have implemented various innovative approaches to enhance the value of both plastic and rubber products. Indeed, apart from mitigating environmental impacts, the adoption of the BCG economic model also supports continuous industries in diversifying their creative product offerings to align with consumer trends and adding value to plastics and rubber products as a whole,” said Mr. Ringling.

To strengthen the capabilities of Thailand’s plastics and rubber industry, Messe Düsseldorf Asia is preparing for the T-PLAS 2023 event. Its primary objective is to empower entrepreneurs in these industries to expand and thrive at an international level effectively. Moreover, it will provide insights into the challenges faced by the plastics and rubber sectors, with a particular focus on plastic recycling to foster a circular economy. T-PLAS 2023 aims to address the issue of single-use plastics by setting a goal to reduce and ultimately eliminate their usage. The event will emphasize the importance of achieving 100% recycling of plastics, aligning with the principles of the circular economy.

Furthermore, T-PLAS 2023 offers a platform for organizations and businesses to showcase their potential and present innovative solutions for the advancement of the plastics and rubber industries. This includes showcasing machinery, work equipment, a wide range of raw materials, technical parts, and comprehensive services related to the plastics and rubber sectors. By providing this opportunity, T-PLAS 2023 aims to add value and contribute to positioning Thailand as a prominent hub for the plastics and rubber industries in Southeast Asia.

The event’s highlights are as follows:

  1. The Recycling Solution Zone will bring together prominent companies, experts, and innovators who are driving the recycling revolution in the plastics industry. This zone serves as a platform for companies to share their experiences in plastic recycling management and discuss various recycling methods with the help of innovative technology aimed at reducing plastic waste. Through interactive discussions and presentations, the zone attracts notable companies such as Mitr Phol Biotech Co., Ltd. and Zerma (Thailand) Co., Ltd., who actively participate and share their experiences in this important area of the industry.
  2. The Circular Economy Seminar at T-PLAS 2023 will be a platform for knowledge exchange regarding the circular economy and sustainability challenges specific to the Southeast Asian market. The seminar will be divided into three sessions: Session 1 – “Circulation and Sustainability,” Session 2 – “ESG Compliance and its Challenges” and Session 3 – “Is Southeast Asia ready for the circular economy?”

The objective is to invite diverse industrial sectors to engage in the event, encompassing agriculture, automotive, construction, chemical, electronics, energy, infrastructure, packaging, telecommunication, and food processing industries. It is expected to see a surge in both business matching activities and investment inflows in Thailand as part of the government’s investment promotion policy and industrial establishment.

“Indeed, the plastics and rubber market has become increasingly competitive, and trade standards have become more stringent. However, Thailand has successfully adapted to these challenges and is effectively positioning itself in the industry. The country has moved beyond being a manufacturer of primary products like concentrated latex and rubber sheets toward further developing innovative, value-added products that cater to the evolving needs of the world.”

“Considering the plastic manufacturing sector, Thailand has not only emerged as one of the world’s prominent producers of bioplastics but has also witnessed a significant shift towards research and development in the field of eco-friendly plastics. Developers, both small and large, are now emphasizing the creation of plastics that are reusable, recyclable, and have minimal environmental impact. This transition has enabled many manufacturers to expand their product offerings beyond conventional plastic items and venture into high-value sectors such as medical equipment, electric vehicles, robots, and aircraft.”

T-PLAS 2023 is scheduled to take place from September 20 to 23, 2023, at BITEC Bangna. This event serves as a platform for showcasing the latest products in the plastic and rubber industry, featuring contributions from leading organizations worldwide. To stay updated with the latest news and developments regarding T-PLAS 2023, visit the official website at