24 May 2012 05:24 [Source: ICIS news]
By Heng Hui
POM’s downstream industries rely solely on consumer spending, but consumer confidence is currently at lows because of prevailing economic uncertainties. The eurozone is still neck-deep in a debt crisis, while the
Asia’s demand for POM is estimated at slightly less than 800,000 tonnes/year, and is expected to grow at an annual rate of about 4-5%, in line with the average economic growth of the region.
POM is considered a low-cost plastic that can replace metals and other engineering resins in automobile manufacturing such as nylon 6,6, polyethylene terephthalate (PET), polycarbonate (PC) polybutylene terephthalate (PBT), and polyvinyl chloride (PVC), in selected applications. It is used in gear drives, pumps, conveyor belts, hand tools, toys, clock and watch parts, and medical devices.
Global POM capacity is currently estimated at above 1.1m tonnes/year, with Asia accounting for more than 70% of the total.
An upbeat outlook on demand growth for engineering plastics, particularly in
Over the next two years, some 280,000 tonnes of new POM capacity are confirmed to come on stream from major players in
In 2013, a new 60,000 tonne/year facility will be started up by
Thai Polyacetal’s new 45,000 tonne/year facility at Map Ta Phut in Rayong province is also due to come on stream in the second quarter of next year. The company has an existing 55,000 tonne/year POM facility at the site.
It is expected to add 90,000 tonnes/year of capacity in early 2014 in
Korea Engineering Plastics is also adding a 35,000 tonne/year facility in
Smaller capacity increases are also being planned in
Market players also warned that if domestic POM production grows too big in
Spot polyacetal prices in Asia were assessed at $1,580-1,700/tonne (€1,264-1,360/tonne) FOB (free on board) NE (northeast)
Prices look set to fall given the current supply glut in Asia, as demand from the key
Scheduled POM plant shutdowns are due in the next few months, but these are unlikely to tighten supply and lift prices as they have been anticipated by the market, market sources said.
PTM Engineering Plastics' 60,000 tonne/year POM resin facility in
Polyplastics will also shut its 100,000 tonne/year POM facility at
($1 = €0.80)
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