Two main factors – the startup of new capacity plus tariffs on exports to China – have resulted in large regional shifts in US exports of linear PE. Exports have increased to all regions but especially to Western and Eastern Europe, and combined shipments to those regions now exceed those to Asia-Pacific.
Reflecting new capacity, US exports of ethylene polymers (LDPE, LLDPE, EAOC, HDPE, EVA, Copolymers) trended upward from the last quarter of 2017 and climbed through several new highs through July 2018.
India’s trade in commodity polymers in the first half of 2018 was highlighted by record high exports of virgin polymers, record high exports of fabricated plastic products, and, increased imports of recycle polymers.
Trade in LDPE/LLDPE, HDPE, EVA and Ethylene Copolymers is projected by International Trader Publications to be up by 6% at yearend 2017 versus the prior year, to nearly 60 million tons.
China imported 11 million tons of ethylene polymers through October 2017, up 20%. Imports of all grades were up substantially and volume has been heavy since August.
The United States exported a total of 4.5 million tons of ethylene polymers through October 2017, down 3% from the prior year. The small decline was the net of lower shipments of LLDPE and HDPE, partly offset by gains on exports of LDPE, EVA and Ethylene Copolymers.
In 2016, Eastern Europe, including Turkey, imported 4 million tons of ethylene polymers from other regions, primarily Western Europe, Middle East and Asia-Pacific. Import volume in 2016 was up 5% from 2015. Continue reading
In 2016, Latin America, including Mexico, imported 4 million tons of ethylene polymers from other regions, primarily North America. Import volume was down 3% from 2015. Continue reading
In 2016 the Asia-Pacific region imported over 12 million tons of ethylene polymers from sources outside the region. This was an increase of roughly 9% from 2015. Continue reading
In 2016, Western Europe imported almost 4 million tons of ethylene polymers from sources outside the region. Imports increased by 14% from the prior year. Continue reading