The US shipped 406,000 tons of recycle polymers through July, 2019, down 46% from the same period in the prior year. China’s total ban on imports of recycle polymers as of 2018 was a key factor in the decline. Further declines in US exports are expected as India has announced it will also ban all recycle polymer imports.Continue reading
US imports from China of PE and PP film/sheet are a relatively small factor in the global total. US imports of PE bags and sacks from China, however, are substantially larger. All of these products are involved in the US/China trade war.Continue reading
The US imported 577,000 tons of propylene polymers through October, 2018, up 39% from the same period in 2017. US exports of these polymers were down 13% through October, to 1.5 million tons.
ITP projects MEG trade volume for 2018 of 15.1 million tons, up 1% from 2017. This compares with an increase of 10% from 2016 to 2017. The trend in global trade volume generally indicates the trend in world demand.
US exports of polypropylene, propylene copolymers and polyisobutylene were down 14% through July 2018, to 1.1 million tons, while imports jumped 36%, to 370,000 tons.
Shipments totaled 5.3 million tons for the year, with volumes at record high levels early in the year, a slowdown from May through November, then a surge in December.
As US exports of recycle polyethylene and PET dropped to record low levels in October, 2017, US imports jumped, mainly on higher volumes from Canada and Mexico.
The new year started off strong for US exports of polyolefins, with heavy shipments in January 2017 of HDPE, LLDPE, LDPE, polypropylene homopolymer and propylene copolymers. Continue reading
The volume of butadiene traded as imports and exports in 2016 was over 2.5 million tons, up 10% from 2015. Higher imports into Asia-Pacific and North America featured prominently in the increase in global volume.
With construction continuing on massive new polyethylene capacity, US imports trended up to a new record high in the second half of the year, as US exports plummeted.