The European Market for Plastic Sorting and Recycling

 The demand for plastic recycling plants in Europe will increase significantly in the years to come: by 2025,sorting and recycling plants with an estimated capacity of 5.2 million tons will be commissioned. This is a growth of 25% and the number of plants will increase by about 300.

Today, Europe has almost 1,200 active plastic sorting and recycling plants. However, this portfolio will not be large enough as recycling becomes increasingly important.

The EU Waste Framework Directive will be the main market driver. By 2020, 50% of the plastic in MSW have to undergo material recovery. Almost no EU member state has yet reached this goal, which creates financial challenges for many countries.

South Europe has the largest market potential: France, Spain and Italy are three populous states with a lot of catching up to do.

Many European waste management systems that are considered as more advanced also do not yet reach MSW recycling quotas complying with the targets. This holds e.g. true for the Netherlands, Denmark, Austria, Sweden and Norway. These states have to withdraw plastic wastes from thermal recovery in order to increase their recycling quotas.

Many countries increase their sorting capacities by expanding or building additional plants at already existing sites.

Against this backdrop, Ecoprog has analysed the plastic sorting and recycling plants throughout Europe and developed a market forecast on the basis of a transparent methodology.

The study The European Market for Plastic Sorting and Recyclingincludes:

  • The collection of information on and analysis of 1,200 plastic sorting plants in Europe, including technical data and contact addresses.
  • A valid estimation of the future market development by country, based on a transparent


  • A competition analysis of the most important operators of sorting and recycling capacities in the European market.
  • An overview of the most important plant technology and the cost dimensions within the plastic

recycling industry.

  • A sound explanation of the European legal framework.


The study is available in English and German and from 3,400,- € plus VAT.