Updated to Q3 2015
The PE market outlook in Asia Pacific looks set to stabilise in Q3 2015. Ethylene prices have fallen in July and the PE supply tightness in Asia Pacific is expected to ease due to increased supply from Middle East and Asian producers. Market players also expect overall demand to strengthen and stabilise towards the end of Q3.
Middle East prices are expected to ease off slightly in Q3 as the production situation improves after Ramadan. Softening ethylene values in Asia and Europe are also seen as a bearish factor. Europe’s PE supply in July has begun to ease, but some PE grades are still tight. PE supply is expected to ease in August as the monomer becomes more available. Prices are expected to go down, but market participants are divided on the extent of the fall. The economic and political uncertainty seen in Turkey caused an uncertain demand situation and market outlook for the PE market in the near future. Market players will continue to monitor Asian PE prices to get a clearer indication of Turkish prices.
With no end in sight for the volatile market conditions that currently grip key chemical markets, having access to accurate and timely pricing information is critical. In recognition of the ever-changing competitive landscape, ICIS has enhanced its Asia pricing intelligence with price alerts for key benchmark assessments.
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Access and download the polyethylene methodology and consultations documents.Polyethylene methodology
Traditionally, China has been heavily reliant on olefins imports. However, with the rapid development of the coal-to-olefins (CTO) industry, the country is now gradually able to produce its own supply.
ICIS recently launched two detailed reports providing expert analyses of the changing landscape of the Chinese olefins industry. A preview of the reports, featuring an extract from the chapter on the status of China’s olefins industry development, has been made available for you to view.
An expert view of supply and demand data for the global polyolefins market is available via our online supply and demand database.
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The three main types of polyethylene (PE) are low density PE (LDPE), linear low density PE (LLDPE) and high density PE (HDPE).
HDPE is a thermoplastic white solid whose molecular chains are comparatively straight and closely aligned. It is resistant to most chemicals, insoluble in organic solvents and has high impact and tensile strength.
LLDPE is a thermoplastic, translucent white solid whose chains are comparatively straight and closely aligned, and has a lower density than HDPE.
LDPE is a thermoplastic white solid which has highly branched and widely spaced molecular chains.
End uses of HDPE include blow-moulding applications such as bottles, packaging containers, drums, fuel tanks for automobiles, toys and house wares. Injection-moulded articles made from HDPE include crates, pallets, packaging containers and caps, paint cans, house wares and toys.
LLDPE’s short chain branching gives it higher tensile strength, puncture and anti-tear properties, making it particularly suitable for high strength film applications.
LDPE is used mainly in film applications for both packaging and non-packaging uses. Other markets include extrusion coatings, sheathing in cables and injection moulding applications.
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