ITP projects polypropylene homopolymer trade volume for 2018 of 20 million tons, up 1% from 2017. This compares with an increase of 5% in 2017 versus 2016. 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.
There was a strong upward trend in Thailand’s exports of commodity polymers through most of the first seven months of the year. Imports of virgin commodity polymers were up slightly; imports of recycle polymers soared.
Singapore imported 1.7 million tons of commodity polymers through July 2018, up 11%, and exported 4.2 million tons, up 6%.
Korea’s exports of commodity polymers expanded moderately in the first seven months of 2018, as did shipments of fabricated plastic products. Imports rose sharply. Korea exported less recycle polymers but imported more.
Brazil’s exports of commodity polymers trended downward through most of the first seven months of 2018. Imports were moderately higher; imports of fabricated plastic products rose strongly.
In the first seven months of 2018, Iran exported slightly more polyethylene than in the same period in 2017. Exports of polypropylene were lower; exports of styrenic polymers and PVC increased, but volumes were small. Exports of fabricated plastic products reached new highs.
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.
Exports from the US of commodity polymers trended higher through most of the first half of 2018 and set a new record in June. Imports of fabricated plastic products also hit a new high in June.
China has reported aggregated statistics for its imports of major products, including polypropylene, ABS and PVC. Continue reading