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China PP growth at risk from lower auto sales, trade war

By John Richardson

WE EXPECT China’s PP demand to rise by 6.5% in 2018 to total consumption of 27.8m tonnes. We then expect a further increase of 6% to 29.3m tonnes next year.

It is too early to say for …

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PE margins turn negative as economic risks build

By John Richardson

CASH margins for Asian linear-low density polyethylene (LLDPE) for naphtha-based producers have turned negative for the first time since Q1 2015, according to an industry contact.

And this is of course before the flood of new US …

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Sustainability to stop petchems from dominating oil growth…..

….and oil consumption into petchems might even decline because of the plastics rubbish crisis

By John Richardson

DONALD RUMSFELD famously categorised the future into “known knowns, known unknowns and unknown unknowns”.

A new study by the International Energy Agency (IEA) …

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US LLDPE exports to Europe to increase by at least 70% in 2019

By John Richardson

ON MONDAY I took the percentage shares of total US linear-low density polyethylene (LLDPE) exports in 2017 country by country and on this basis modelled what could happen in 2019.

We are next year due to see …

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US LLDPE needs 68% export growth next year to top five markets…..

…..and that’s assuming there is no trade war with China!

By John Richardson

THE MORE you dig into the data the more it seems that the US might struggle to find a comfortable home for all of its new polyethylene …

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US styrene another petchems sector at risk from trade war

By John Richardson

THE US decision to pick a fight with China over trade and geopolitical influence could backfire very badly from the perspective of new US investments in petrochemicals capacity – most notably polyethylene (PE) and ethylene glycols (EG).…

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Middle East, India, SEA petchems winners in new trading blocs

By John Richardson

JACK MA, the founder of Alibaba, said of the US/China trade war, “It’s going to last a long time, maybe 20 years. It’s going to be a mess. It’s not a trade war, it’s about competition between …

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China’s time poor, cash rich will want less PP and not more

By John Richardson

LAST month I gave you the downside of urbanisation in China and how this could result in 7m tonnes of lower polyethylene (PE) demand in 2030 than we assume in our base case.

A very good contact …

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How Lehman Bros reshaped China and the global PE business

By John Richardson

MOST of the analysis on the tenth anniversary of the Global Financial Crisis (GFC) focuses on the effects on Western economies and societies. Economic inequality has risen since 2008 resulting in the rise of populist politics, is …

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Polyethylene versus polypropylene: Expect the unexpected

By John Richardson

IT IS supposed to be a tale of two polymers with these very different fortunes: Whereas our base case assumes that global polypropylene (PP) operating rates will average a healthy 89% in 2018-2025, we see polyethylene (PE) …

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