Packaging materials manufacturer API has announced a 20% price hike across its foil product range after it experienced "substantial" price inflation in the polyester market.

The $137m-turnover company made the increases effective from 17 December 2010, and said the move was "inevitable" following the increasing cost of raw materials and supply shortages.

API Foils sales manager for UK and export Simon Moorhouse added: "We are absorbing as much of the costs as possible to minimize the effect on our customers, unfortunately price increases are inevitable. We are also aiming to increase efficiency and reduce waste in order to control the increase. We feel the price of raw materials has gone up mainly because of shortage in supply. "

The company is set to launch several packaging products in 2011, with the potential to open up growth opportunities for packaging printers in new sectors.

"We are in the phase of appointing a new distributor, Printec based in Dubai. We will have local stock for ME region from now on. We will be participating in Gulf Print exhibition along with new distributor", he added.