Japan Consolidation Continues

Japan3.jpgSource: Japan Petrochemical Industry Association

By John Richardson

JAPAN’S petrochemicals industry remains in consolidation mode, as my ICIS colleague Nigel Davis writes in this article.

And, as the chart above shows, Japan’s ethylene output continues to fall. It was down 8% to 6.146 million tonnes in 2012 year-on-year.

Future consolidation includes:

*Mitsubishi Chemical’s planned closure of a 410,000 tonne/year ethylene plant and a benzene production unit in Kashima. It will expand a second ethylene unit at the site to provide what it says will be a structure “better-able to respond to the trend towards higher performance and value-added petrochemical products”.

*Sumitomo Chemical’s intention to decommission a 430,000 tonne/year cracker at its Chiba Works in 2015.

*Asahi Kasei and Mitsubishi Chemical’s discussions over consolidating their combined naphtha- cracking capacity at the Mizushima Complex in Japan’s Okayama Prefecture.

We are struggling to understand how “Abenomics” will change anything for the better forJapan’s struggling commodity petrochemicals business.

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