World fiber output increased by 5.1% to 74.7 million tons in 2006, according to preliminary data in an annual report on world fiber production from textile machinery maker Oerlikon Saurer Textile. The full report “The Fiber Year 2006/07” is scheduled for release in May.
In its preview, Oerlikon Saurer has recast its data for last year, raising output to 71.1 million tons due to an upward revision of China’s man-made fiber (MMF) production figures. The adjustment resulted from 0.7 million tons of extra polyester fiber output, said the company.
The report forecasts cotton consumption will hit a new all-time record in the current season of approximately 26.3 million tons, a 4.5% increase over the previous season. Demand has again exceeded production and cotton stocks are expected to decline by 10% to around 10 million tons.
With the exception of acrylic fibers, MMF contributed strongly to the higher output. Cellulose fibers continued a six-year rising trend with further growth, growing by 5.9% to 3.4 million tons, with viscose leading the way—up by 9.3% to 2.3 million tons. Synthetic fiber output increased by 6.4% to 37.8 million tons, according to the study.
Polyester has been a key driver in the rising output, with growth across all segments. Last year, polyester fiber production advanced by 8.4% to 27.7 million tons, said Oerlikon Saurer. Staple fiber output was 7.9% higher at 11.7 million tons while filament production hit 16 million tons, up by 8.8%. Polyester production in Asia has soared, mainly in PR China, India and Vietnam, while the contribution from Europe and the Americas has declined.
Polyamide output was up slightly (2.4%) to 4.1 million tons while polypropylene production rose at a similar rate, up by 2.5% to 3.1 million tons in 2006. Acrylic fiber output declined by 3% to 2.5 million tons.