Epichlorohydrin Prices, markets & analysis
ICIS provides independent and unbiased pricing information, news and market analysis for the global Epichlorohydrin market. Our network of price reporters, based in Asia, Europe and the US, deliver local insight for each of these markets, which is published in our individual weekly and daily price reports.
If you buy or sell Epichlorohydrin or related products, our reports, news and market intelligence will give you the prices and analysis of the factors driving the prices that you need to make confident commercial decisions.
Epichlorohydrin Overview Transcript
Epichlorohydrin or ECH is an extremely versatile chemical intermediate.
There are two different ECH production processes one is propylene based, and the other is glycerine based. Most ECH producers use the propylene route.
ECH is used to produce a wide variety of products including epoxy resins, textiles, paper, inks and dyes.
Approximately three-quarters of the world’s consumption of ECH is used for epoxy resins, making demand from this sector the key to ECH prices.
ECH in Asia is mainly traded on a spot basis between producers and long-term end-users. Trade activity within Asia has become thinner in recent years, due to limited export availability from Korea, Japan, Taiwan and China where there is strong domestic growth in epoxy resin demand.
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Epichlorohydrin: Market overview
The global epichlorohydrin (ECH) market is expected to see feedstock challenges amid a largely oversupplied market lengthened by weak downstream epoxy resins demand.
The ECH market is mostly influenced by demand for its most important derivative epoxy resins. In turn, epoxy resins demand is driven by the electronics, coatings and laminates, automotive coatings and oilfield resins markets.
As a result of the ongoing macroeconomic slowdown, construction and automotive output slowed which has been cutting into epoxy resins demand.
In addition, the costs of upstream propylene has been fluctuating, affecting ECH and epoxy resins prices.
Chlorine supply remains on the long side as demand for it continues to be dampened by weak chlorine derivative sales.
As long as demand for epoxy resins continues to be poor, there is little chance for an uptick in ECH sales, which in turn might lead to market consolidation.
Already, European and global producers have cut back output and are considering further reductions if demand does not improve.
Updated to mid-August 2013
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Epichlorohydrin (ECH) is a clear, colourless liquid with a sweet, pungent odour. The main production process is based on the chlorination of propylene to make allyl chloride as the intermediate step to ECH.
Around three-quarters of global ECH demand is used to make epoxy resins which offer corrosion resistance, solvent and chemical resistance, hardness and adhesion. They are used in the manufacture of adhesives, coatings and structural parts for the automotive, aerospace, electronics and construction industries. The electronics industry uses epoxy resins to encapsulate electronic components and protect them from damage.
Other uses for ECH include preparation of fibres in textile manufacture, improving the performance of paper products, and ion exchange resins.