Will China, the world’s most important HDPE demand centre, and an increasingly important supply centre, drag Europe down to its levels? Or will the China market increase closer to today’s levels in Europe?
Asian Chemical Connections
A NEW NORMAL for European (PE) markets could be underway, replacing the divided world of the last 10 months, as the chart below suggests.
By John Richardson SECURITY OF SUPPLY is a critical concern for European polyolefins producers and buyers because of the risks of interrupted Russian oil and gas supplies. You cannot, of course, run polyolefins plants without sufficient energy supplies. So, in order to support European readers of the blog, let me start with some headline energy […]
By John Richardson CHINA’S INCREASING self-sufficiency in high-density polyethylene (HDPE), combined with the potential for slower economic growth, is a developing story which is obviously being overshadowed by Ukraine. But China’s decisions on operating rates – as much political as economic –- and on whether its sticks hard and fast to Common Prosperity reforms in […]
The petrochemicals or chemicals (depending what you prefer) transition to Net Zero is both connected and different from the energy transition for reasons I’ll detail in a series of blog posts, starting today with a few headline thoughts on how global margin and cost curve positions my change over the next few years – and […]
By John Richardson ONCE AGAIN, PLEASE don’t say I didn’t warn you. The switch from inflation to disinflation or deflation is already well underway, a lot sooner than my prediction of Q1 next year. American retailers, having spent months scaring customers with stories of shortages, were trying to lure them into stores with offers of […]
By John Richardson WE NOW HAVE enough data to make some firm conclusions about what the Chinese polyethylene (PE) market will have looked like in 2021. We can also make some early estimates about the shape of the market in 2022. The slide below details what the ICIS apparent demand data for January-October 2021 (our […]
By John Richardson WE ALL NEED TO ASK ourselves whether the global patterns in polyethylene (PE) and polypropylene (PP) pricing and margins that we have seen over the last year represent a long-term divergence in global markets or something temporary. As discussed on Monday, when I examined linear low-density PE (LLDPE) market (and the same […]
By John Richardson THE BALTIC DRY INDEX, one of the excellent barometers of overall economic activity, was late last week at its lowest level since June on a slowing Chinese economy, easing congestion at Chinese ports and a fall in Chinese coal imports (more on this in a moment). “The index was around 1,000 a […]
By John Richardson AGAIN, DON’T say I didn’t tell you. In my 11 October blog post, having talked to people who know what they are talking about, I flagged up the possibility that China’s energy shortages could be fixed a lot quicker than many people were suggesting. Those in the know about China told me […]