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Industry Talk

Technical textiles are driving growth of global textiles industry

According to Germany’s Commerzbank, the world market for conventional textiles will expand and be worth around US $160 billion by 2018.

18th January 2017

Innovation in Textiles
 |  Frankfurt

Sports/​Outdoor, Protective, Medical/Hygiene, Transport/​Aerospace, Clothing/​Footwear, Sustainable, Interiors, Construction, Civil Engineering, Industrial, Packaging, Agriculture

With three months still to go before the doors open, 85% of exhibition space at Techtextil 2017 has already been booked, which means the next edition of the leading international trade fair for technical textiles and nonwovens, which will be held from 9 to 12 May, will grow in comparison to the previous fair.

“Technical textiles rank among the most important driving forces of growth in the textile sector. The fact that so many companies have already registered for Techtextil 2017 is an indication of how dynamically the sector is developing,” commented Olaf Schmidt, Vice President Textiles and Textile Technologies, Messe Frankfurt.


Some of the companies that have already booked exhbition space at Techtextil 2017 include market leaders such as Forster Rohner, Freudenberg, Groz-Beckert, IBENA Textilwerke, Lenzing, Mehler Texnologies, Outlast Europe, PHP Fibers, Sandler, Sattler PRO-TEX, Schoeller Textil, Sioen Fabrics, and Trützschler.

As in the past, numerous countries will be represented by national pavilions. Belgium and Italy have increased the size of their pavilions and firm bookings have already been received from China, France, UK, India, Canada, Portugal, Spain, Taiwan, the Czech Republic, Turkey and the USA.

From conductive yarns, via smart textiles, to composites and lightweight constructions, Techtextil 2017 will present the complete spectrum of textile solutions for the automobile industry, construction and architecture, industry, medicine, and clothing.

Economic climate

According to the German Textile and Fashion Association, the turnover of the German textile and fashion industry rose by around 2% in 2015, compared to the previous year. Particularly successful were textiles and technical textiles with a growth rate in excess of 3%.

The economic climate in the sector is also good on the European plane. According to the Euratex association, the production of nonwovens rose by 3% and that of technical and industrial textiles by 6% in the period from January to May 2016, compared to the same period the year before. Exports from European countries rose by a total of 5% between 2014 and 2015.

The economic climate in the leading non-European textile nations is also good. For example, the USA anticipates further growth in 2016. At present, technical textiles account for 37% of US textile production. China is forecasting export growth of 4% in the technical-textiles sector and aims to increase its production to 22 million tonnes by 2020. India expects production to grow from the current level of around US $18 billion to 26 billion by 2017.

According to Germany’s Commerzbank, the world market for conventional textiles will expand and be worth around US $160 billion by 2018. In the case of nonwovens, the world market is expected to grow in terms of sales to over US $42 billion in 2017.


Texprocess, the leading international trade fair for processing textile and flexible materials, will be held concurrently with Techtextil and offer insights into all aspects of textile processing, including textile finishing and digital printing.

The number of registrations received for Texprocess is also extremely good, organisers report. Techtextil 2015 was attended by 28,500 trade visitors from 102 nations, as well as over 5,500 trade visitors from the concurrent Texprocess.

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