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.
The volume of PE bags and sacks (plus cones) traded globally in 2015 was 3.7 million tons. Trade volume in 2016 is projected to be up about 4%, to just over 3.8 million tons. Western European countries and the United States are major import markets; China is the world’s top exporter, although shipments from other countries are rising. Continue reading
Unusually low imports of monoethylene glycol into China early in 2016 were reflected in trade flows globally, especially exports out of the Middle East and from Asia-Pacific suppliers. Global volume of 8.1 million tons through August was down 11%, despite strong demand in several other markets.