28 March 2010 16:35 [Source: ICIS news]
SAN ANTONIO, Texas (ICIS news)--The global propylene oxide/propylene glycol (PO/PG) markets are expected to remain tight, with improving demand, supply constraints and raw material cost pressures, the head of US-based Dow Chemical’s PO/PG business said on Sunday.
“We continue to see improving demand in just about every sector from the downturn,” said John Smith, global product director, PO/PG for Dow, in an interview with ICIS on the sidelines of the International Petrochemical Conference (IPC).
“It looks like we’re at a growth pace where the industry needs about one world-scale ?xml:namespace>
“We are seeing improving demand in the automotive, bedding, appliance and construction end markets across the board,” he said.
The major driver of PO growth was polyether polyols, which consumes 60-65% of
Tightness in PO/PG raw materials, in particular propylene in North America, Europe and
Plus, a number of planned outages in PO/PG could also extend the tight market, he added.
Dow is taking its
“Supplies are tight right now and this could probably last in the next few months,” said Smith.
“Tight supply/demand and a cost push from feedstocks are driving prices higher. We see the potential for higher prices in all regions,” he added.
Dow nominated a price increase of 5 cents/lb on all grades of PO/PG in mid-March.
“It is too early to say [if it will be successful], but we think the market will accept it,” he said.
Dow has total global
Other North American producers of PO/PG include Huntsman, LyondellBasell and Shell.
Hosted by the National Petrochemical & Refiners Association (NPRA), the IPC continues through Tuesday.
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