Japan posts Oct primary polymer export decline

21 November 2008 10:27  [Source: ICIS news]

TOKYO (ICIS news)--Japan’s exports of all four primary polymers low-density polyethylene (LDPE), high-density PE (HDPE), polypropylene (PP) and polystyrene (PS) in October significantly declined from a year earlier due to a drop in market prices as well the appreciation of yen, a local industry association said on Friday.

 

Among these polymers, exports of PP had the largest decline of 48% to 13,200 tonnes from the same time a year before, the Japan Petrochemical Industry Association (JPCA) said.

 

All of the four resins also had lower exports month on month, JPCA added.

 

The country produced 529,500 tonnes of ethylene in October, down 19.8% from the year-ago period and a 0.2% decrease from September, according to the association.

 

The operating rate of the country’s crackers was 89.1% in October, a decline from 98.3% in October 2007 and 92.8% the previous month, JPCA said.

 

One cracker by an unnamed producer was shut for a turnaround in October 2008 and 2007, while two ethylene plants were undergoing turnarounds in September 2008, the association said.

 

Of the 17 petrochemical products other than ethylene, output of 16 products including the four primary resins, polyvinyl chloride (PVC), vinyl chloride monomer (VCM), benzene, toluene and xylene in October was lower than the year before due to operating factors, and only butadiene rubber (BR) had higher production, according to JPCA.

 

Month on month, production of eight chemicals including LDPE, styrene monomer (SM), benzene and toluene increased, the association said.

 

Japan October chemical production (in ’000 tonnes)

 

Product

output

% change
month on month

% change
year on year

ethylene

529.5

0

-20

LDPE

136.7

0

-18

HDPE

81.9

-10

-13

PP

237.9

0

-14

PS

65.8

-1

-6

styrene monomer

202.4

4

-26

PVC

147.2

-4

-21

vinyl chloride monomer

195.9

-6

-29

MMA monomer

32.6

-30

-22

ethylene oxide

76

11

-13

ethylene glycol

51.7

4

-22

acetaldehyde

19.3

3

-30

CAN

42.1

-3

-31

SBR (solid)

38.9

-1

-6

butadiene rubber
 (solid)

24.6

7

6

Benzene

364.1

3

-17

Toluene

111.6

2

-17

Xylene

417.5

-5

-13

nb: All the percentages are rounded off after the decimal point.

Source: JPCA

 

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By: Tomomi Yokomura
+65 6780 4359



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