BPA to drive global phenolic growth – analyst

13 November 2012 14:56  [Source: ICIS news]

BERLIN (ICIS)--The global outlook for phenol growth remains positive, a senior industry analyst said on Tuesday, with bisphenol A (BPA) to remain the key driver in all regions.

Speaking at the 11th World Aromatics & Derivatives Conference in Berlin, Germany, Stewart Hardy, global manager, petrochemical market dynamics at US-headquartered consultancy firm Nexant, said while caprolactam (capro) and phenolic resins will see some volume growth in the next eight years – the latter somewhat helped by the European construction slowdown, as it feeds into the insulation sector – it will still be BPA that spurs global consumption.

Regionally, Hardy noted that while Asia is expected to become a larger part of the phenolic mix globally, the market will see a temporary oversupply and low operating rates in China.

Phenol and BPA plants have been developed, but this is outpacing derivative development in markets such as polycarbonate (PC) and epoxy resins. This will result in some overhang in the Asian market, and Hardy said this is likely to squeeze exports from the US into the region.

Elsewhere, Hardy noted that European growth has been hindered by the downturn in the construction industry, while the Middle East will see some growth, although overall volumes remain relatively small.

The 11th World Aromatics & Derivatives Conference, organised by ICIS and International eChem, is taking place in Berlin on 13-14 November 2012.

By: Truong Mellor
+44 208 652 3214

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