Ethylene vinyl acetate Prices, markets & analysis
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Ethylene vinyl acetate Overview Transcript
Ethylene vinyl acetate, also known as EVA, is a plastic product derived from the copolymerisation of ethylene with vinyl acetate.
EVA’s main advantages include its properties of clarity and toughness, along with strong flexibility and ability to withstand low temperatures. It also has good tear resistance.
The main uses for EVA are in the manufature of stretch film for shrink wrapping, protective strips, sports shoe soles, sandals, slippers and disposable medical equipment. It is also used as a coating for heat-sealing on polypropylene, polyethylene terephthalate and aluminium films. Other uses include insulating tubing and wire-coating.
In recent years supply of the lower EVA grades has been dwindling as producers focus production on grades with vinyl acetate content of above 30% in response to growing demand for this grade from the solar panel industry.
Supply and demand fundamentals drive Asia’s EVA prices. Demand has outstripped supply in recent years with strong interest from the downstream footwear sector and increasingly, the photovoltaic industry. Other key influences on the market include price trends of polyethylene because most EVA factories in Asia are EVA and PE swing plants
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Ethylene vinyl acetate: Market overview
Ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA) producers are aiming to recover their margins in 2013 after facing firmer upstream costs and weak EVA prices since the second quarter of 2012. The squeezed margins in 2012 also prompted some producers in Asia to reassess their plans for new production capacity or expansion in 2013 and beyond.
EVA supply has been long on the back of capacity debottlenecking in South Korea and weaker-than-expected demand for all EVA grades. Several EVA producers curtailed their plant operating rates since October 2012, because of poor macroeconomic conditions and the eurozone debt crisis.
The photovoltaic sector, which was previously expected to be a bright spark in the EVA industry, has been relatively subdued, because of potential antidumping measures from Europe on China-made solar panels. In October 2012, the US set final antidumping duties (ADDs) on imports of Chinese solar cell products at 18.32-249.96%. But in a deal reached by the China Chamber of Commerce for Import and Export of Machinery and Electronic Products (CCCME) and the European Commission, China-based exporters of solar panels to the eurozone will maintain a minimum price for solar panels rather than be subject to anti-dumping duties, according to a deal effective 6 August 2013.
A slight improvement in demand from the photovoltaic sector in early 2013, following the depletion of inventories, fizzled out by the second quarter.
Updated to mid- August 2013
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About Ethylene vinyl acetate
Ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA) is a copolymer that is manufactured from ethylene and vinyl acetate monomer (VAM). The main advantages of EVA is that it has good toughness, flexibility, clarity and gloss, the ability to withstand low temperatures, and good tear resistance.
In packaging applications, the resins can be made into blown, extruded, cast and coextruded films, or blended with other resins. They can be moulded and extruded into soft plastic items such as hoses and tubes, formulated into hot melt adhesives, and used in plastic compounding, wire and cable insulation.
EVA is also used as a coating for heat sealing on polypropylene (PP), polyethylene terephthalate (PET) and aluminium films. A growing use for EVA is in solar cells as an encapsulation material.