ICIS Chemicals Resources - Archive

 

Archived Content

Market update: Which way next for US polyethylene terephthalate (PET) prices?

Market update: Which way next for US PET prices?

Price direction in the US polyethylene terephthalate (PET) market heading into 2014 has become uncertain on the back of difficult-to-settle feedstock.

Market outlook: Bleak outlook for Asia ethanolamine

Market outlook: Bleak outlook for Asia ethanolamine

Weak regional demand has subdued Asia ethanolamine prices. An abundance of ethylene oxide (EO) production in China is keeping the market oversupplied. Some sources expect amines prices to fall further.

Transformations to spark M&A

Transformations to spark M&A

The global chemical mergers and acquisitions (M&A) market is set to get an extra kick in 2014 as chemical companies become more aggressive on transformations, shedding non-core assets to focus on key growth areas.

 



 

Chemical profile: US polyvinyl chloride (PVC)

Chemical profile: US polyvinyl chloride (PVC)

Weak downstream demand from the subdued construction sector continued during 2013, despite market hopes for a muted pick-up. Is the US PVC and vinyl derivatives market finally about to rebound in 2014? 

Market outlook: Asia fatty alcohols suffer from feedstock volatility

Market outlook: Asia fatty alcohols suffer from feedstock volatility

Uncertainty regarding upstream palm kernel oil (PKO) production in the typhoon hit Philippines is expected to impact the Asian fatty alcohols market for the first six months of 2014. PKO prices have continued to fluctuate.

Chemical profile: Europe propylene

Chemical profile: Europe propylene

The primary outlet for propylene is polypropylene (PP), which accounts for nearly two-thirds of global consumption. Other important derivatives include acrylonitrile (ACN), acrylic acid, oxo-alcohols, propylene oxide (PO), and cumene. Propylene is also used to make high-octane gasoline blendstocks and can also be blended into propane.

 



 

Chemical profile: Asia ethylene

Chemical profile: Asia ethylene

The Asia ethylene market has seen sluggish demand followed by tighter supply – prompted by a gas feedstock shortage and reduced operating rates. Low cost production in the Middle East and the US remains a key challenge. 

Market outlook: Price hikes expected for styrene acrylonitrile (SAN) resins

Market outlook: Price hikes expected for SAN resins

Rising feedstock costs have put upward price pressure on the styrene acrylonitrile (SAN) market.

ICIS polyethylene and polypropylene (PEPP) podcast

Listen to the ICIS (PEPP) podcast

Listen to the the Polyethylene and Polypropylene (PEPP) podcast produced by ICIS News to hear the latest developments in these key commodity markets.

 



 

Market outlook: Uncertainty for US solvents markets

Market outlook: Uncertainty for US solvents markets

US solvents market players are expecting mixed outcomes early 2014. Isopropanol alcohol (IPA) and methyl isobutyl ketone (MIBK) could see price increases due to higher raw materials costs whereas methyl ethyl ketone (MEK) prices could remain flat to soft. 

Market outlook: Asia caprolactam markets relying on downstream improvements

Market outlook: Asia capro markets relying on downstream improvements

Volatility characterised Asia's caprolactam (capro) spot market in 2013 with weak downstream performance as a key factor. For 2014, growth is dependent mainly on stronger downstream nylon markets.

Market outlook: Can European PET retain its value under difficult conditions?

Market outlook: Can European PET retain its value under difficult conditions?

South Korean imports, squeezed margins and plant closures continue to put pressure on the European polyethylene terephthalate (PET) market. Erratic feedstock values may also impact PET price stability.

 



 

Market outlook: Asia caustic soda

Market outlook: A stable start to 2014 for Asia caustic soda

Tight availability of Asia liquid caustic soda cargoes should keep spot prices stable for Q1 say market players. Chlor-alkali facilities in the region are carefully monitoring operating rates. Ethylene feedstock prices remain high. Chlorine-derivative prices are weak.

Mixed results for Middle East and Africa producers

Mixed results for Middle East and Africa producers

The Top 10 Middle East regional leaders list provides you with a further dissection and analysis of the ICIS Top 100 Chemical Companies.

Lower levels of import demand from Asia has pressured Middle East petrochemical producers.

The US shale gas boom, outlook and implications for global chemicals

The US shale gas boom, outlook and implications for global chemicals

The capacity for US ethylene and derivatives will increase substantially between now and 2020, boosting the global footprint. The level of US plastics exports is expected to increase in line with capacity.

US producers will benefit from a cost advantage and relatively high margins until about 2017 when the flood of capacity comes on.

 



 

 



 

 



 

 



 

 



 

 



 

Market outlook: Mixed opinions on Europe butanediol 2014 outlook

Market outlook: Mixed opinions on Europe butanediol 2014 outlook

Views on possible demand for European butanediol (BDO) in 2014 are varied as the Europe economy continues to give mixed signals. BDO downstream construction and automotive sectors are not yet strong and output remains modest. 

A look into Asian synthetic butadiene rubber (SBR)

A look into Asian synthetic butadiene rubber (SBR)

Rubber prices in Asia may come under pressure because of weak demand due to the continuing economic slowdown in China market.

Will we be seeing a repeat of 2013 where SBR producers will also be running their plants at reduced rate due to low prices? Download this free market outlook article to gain a better understanding of the various challenges and growing opportunities within Asia and the domestic rubber industry in China, India and southeast Asia.

Shale gas: The US boom and the impact on global petrochemicals

Download the webinar slides:  Shale gas, the US project boom, and the impact on global petrochemicals

Joe Chang, Global Editor of ICIS Chemical Business, leads a free ICIS webinar on Shale Gas, the US Project Boom and Impact on Global Petrochemicals.

Download the webinar slides if you missed the webinar.

Market insight: Chemical industry focused on green targets

Market insight: Chemical industry focused on green targets

The chemical industry has been dealing with EU legislation in recent years aimed at making the world a safer and healthier place to live and work in. More than 130 separate environmental targets and objectives have to be met in Europe between 2010 and 2050 in a drive to cut energy use, pollution, and waste generation.

Market outlook: China and India to lead Asia methanol growth

Market outlook: China and India to lead Asia methanol growth

Methanol prices in Asia are set to increase in 2014 as demand and shipping costs go up. Traditional demand sources expect growth to match GDP, however non-traditional sectors are growing at a faster pace.

AFPM Interactive

AFPM Interactive

ICIS brings you news and photo coverage from the AFPM International Petrochemical Conference in San Antonio, with video interviews with leading AFPM and industry executives, including Peter Huntsman, Lynne Lachemyer of ExxonMobil and Grant Thornton of NOVA Chemicals. They discuss shale gas, industry trends and issues and AFPM regulatory concerns.

Asian polypropylene key trends

Asian Polypropylene key trends

Read about Asian polypropylene trends for March 2014. Drawing on expertise from ICIS and discussions with industry players, this article covers some of the major trends in the PP Asian market.

We recommend reading this article if you are making short to mid-term future commercial decisions in this market.

Market Outlook - US and Latin American Plastics

Market Outlook - US and Latin American Plastics

The presentation includes information and analysis for polyethylene and polypropylene trade flows, price drivers, feedstocks and recent price trends in the US and Latin America.

Read additional insight into the US shale gas boom, why it matters, its impact on the industry, the significance in global competitiveness, the challenges ahead and other implications for chemical buyers, sellers and traders.

Mexichem surges among Latin America leaders

Mexichem surges among Latin America leaders

The Top 10 Latin America regional leaders list provides you with a further dissection and analysis of the ICIS Top 100 Chemical Companies.

The rankings remain the same, but Mexichem is making a surge with acquisitions.

Adhesive & Sealant Convention 2013 Publication

ASC 2013

ICIS and the US Adhesive and Sealant Council (ASC) have produced a special publication for the ASC’s 2013 Spring Convention in Atlanta, Georgia, US.

The 24-page publication has interviews with leading industry and association executives as well as key speakers at the event. Technical advances, regulatory developments and market trends are all covered in depth, as well as environmental issues

 



 

Restructure plants to boost margins

Restructure plants to boost margins

With increasing supplies of gas-based petrochemical feedstocks coming on stream in the Middle East, now is a good time to consider reconfiguring refineries to boost production of chemicals for export to Asia.

Chemical profile: US Linear low density polyethylene (LLDPE)

Chemical profile: US Linear low density polyethylene (LLDPE)

Demand for linear low density polyethylene (LLDPE) exports waned during 2013 as US prices were undercut by other regions. An uptake in construction and landscaping is expected to boost domestic demand. Operating rates should remain above 90% for the next few years.

What’s influencing PP prices and trade in the Middle East?

What’s influencing PP prices and trade in the Middle East?

ICIS has produced this short video to provide you with the latest updates on the Middle Eastern PP industry. It discusses the current market situation and the different factors influencing prices, supply and demand in the region.

The video also offers a report on the trading activity changes, with deals now being concluded in a DEL (delivered) Dubai basis rather than CFR (cost & freight) Dubai.

 



 

Asia’s polyolefins market: Changing dynamics and feedstock impact

Asia’s polyolefins market: Changing dynamics and feedstock impact

Download this presentation for a better understanding of Asia’s polyolefins markets. It includes a review of 2012-13 polyethylene (PE) and polypropylene (PP) markets, as well as a look forward at the changes in dynamics for the rest of 2013. 

Market outlook: Benzene rise threatens European phenol market

Market outlook: Benzene rise threatens European phenol market

Low cost imports and difficult trading conditions are cited by INEOS as the reason for closure of their 300,000 tonne/year vinyl acetate momomer (VAM) plant in Hull, UK. Celanese may also be closing their Spanish plant. This represents a combined loss of 50% capacity in Europe. 

 



 

North American leaders to see improved 2013

North American leaders to see improved 2013

The Top 10 North America regional leaders list provides you with a further dissection and analysis of the ICIS Top 100 Chemical Companies.

After a challenging 2012, the North American Top 10 should see higher profits in 2013.

ICIS Top 50 Chemical Third-party Logistics Providers (3PLs)

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The annual ICIS Top 50 listing of the world’s major Chemical Third-party Logistics Providers (3PLs) provides you with an insight into the largest companies in the 3PL sector and the services that they provide.

Emerging Frontiers - Oleochemicals in Latin America

Emerging Frontiers - Oleochemicals in Latin America

This presentation provides a snapshot of the oleochemical industry in Latin America, focusing on the larger producers within the personal care and cosmetic sectors.

Most countries in the region are net importers of fatty acids and refined glycerine and import product from the US Gulf and southeast Asia, levels of which are directly linked to GDP.

 



 

Identify opportunities in the Middle East

Identify opportunities in the Middle East

For a regular source of comprehensive and trusted information on the chemical, energy and fertilizer markets in the Middle East, ICIS is your ideal market intelligence partner. Wherever you are based, and whether you are buying, selling or trading – you can trust ICIS to keep you informed on import/export prices and market dynamics in the Middle East.

Market Focus: To sleep, and then recycle?

Market Focus: To sleep, and then recycle?

Mattresses are a very visible and voluminous source of polyurethane (PU) waste, but efforts are under way to boost recycling initiatives at federal level acrossthe US.

Methanol: Questions & Answers

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Methanol is a globally traded commodity and its profitability depends on upstream costs and downstream demand. Ross Yeo is ICIS’s expert on the European methanol market. We asked Ross about what is happening in the market.

 



 

Phenol and bisphenol-A (BPA) producers hope for higher margins

Phenol Margins

European producers in the phenol chain expect solid demand in 2012 but concerns remain about poor margins.

Caprolactam: Questions & Answers

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Caprolactam producers are being squeezed between high prices from suppliers and low demand downstream. Mark Victory is ICIS’s expert on caprolactam in Europe. We talk to him about the prospects for this important intermediate in the polyamide chain.

Middle East PET makers may cut output further on global oversupply

Mideast PET makers may cut output further on global oversupply

Polyethylene terephthalate (PET) producers in the Middle East may be forced to reduce operating rates in 2013 to stave off margin pressures from rising feedstock costs amid a glut in global supply, industry sources said.

 



 

APIC 2012 – Megatrends: Shaping the future of the petrochemical industry

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ICIS and Japan’s The Chemical Daily have just produced the official publication for APIC 2012, in association with the organiser, the Malaysian Petrochemical Association.

Read about the pressures on olefins, polyester and polymer markets as China’s economy slows.

2012 CPI Polyurethanes Technical Conference publication

IPEX

This special publication from ICIS focuses on the global polyurethanes industry, looking at market developments, sustainability, recycling and its use in automotives and construction. Includes an in-depth interview with ACC CEO Cal Dooley, who talks about the resurgence of the US chemical industry and ongoing regulatory issues.

ICIS GCPA Publication 2012

GCPA

ICIS has published the official publication for the 7th Annual GPCA Forum, organised by the Gulf Petrochemicals & Chemicals Association (GPCA) in Dubai on 27-29 November.

The publication features GPCA news, interviews with senior industry personnel and articles on the broad theme of sustainability and competitiveness in a rapidly changing world, including polymer trade issues, port infrastructure, project financing and talent nurturing.

 



 

Europe chemicals suffer torrid markets

Europe chemicals suffer torrid markets

The Top 10 Europe regional leaders list provides you with a further dissection and analysis of the ICIS Top 100 Chemical Companies.

2012 was a tough one for Europe based chemical companies struggling to maintain sales and profitability in the midst of the eurozone crisis and stalling growth in Asia, particularly China.

ICIS reveals Top 40 Power Players

Top 40

ICIS Chemical Business magazine has revealed the ICIS Top 40 Power Players – the leaders changing the face of the global chemical sector through investments, acquisitions, restructurings and innovative ways to do business.

“It’s been an eventful 2013 with major shifts in the global chemical landscape taking place, including impacts from the US shale gas boom,” said Joseph Chang, Global Editor of ICIS Chemical Business.

ICIS reader survey: sustainability and green chemicals

Genomatica

ICIS has just published the findings of its latest reader survey, carried out in association with Genomatica, on attitudes and company activity in the area of sustainability and green chemicals.

Findings show sustainability is really deeply embedded in the industry now, and customers and suppliers are working along the supply chain to improve their products; sustainability.

 



 

ICIS GCPA Interactive 2012

GCPA

ICIS brings you news and interviews from the recent Annual Forum of the Gulf Petrochemicals & Chemicals Association (GPCA) in Dubai on 27-29 November.

The online publication features video interviews with GPCA chairman Mohamed Al-Mady, and the CEOs of Sipchem, Orpic and Tasnee, as well as key speakers at the event, including Chad Holliday of Bank of America, Randy Woelfel of Nova Chemicals and Neil Chapman of ExxonMobil Chemical. All discuss the broad theme of sustainability and competitiveness in a rapidly changing world.

The art and science of forecasting webinar slides

The art and science of forecasting webinar slides

US polypropylene (PP) markets remain volatile, creating continued uncertainty regarding future prices and market performance.

The presentation slides from a forecasting webinar recently held by James Ray, an ICIS expert consultant, are now available for you to download.

 



 

Chemical profile: US Linear low density polyethylene (LLDPE)

Chemical profile: US Linear low density polyethylene (LLDPE)

Demand for linear low density polyethylene (LLDPE) exports waned during 2013 as US prices were undercut by other regions. An uptake in construction and landscaping is expected to boost domestic demand. Operating rates should remain above 90% for the next few years.

INSIGHT: Europe polyurethane demand continues its decline in 2013

INSIGHT: Europe polyurethane demand continues its decline in 2013

European polyurethane (PU) demand has fallen by 5-20% year on year in 2013 depending on application and is 20-40% lower than before the 2008 downturn and ensuing recession, polyurethane industry sources say. 

Market outlook: Benzene rise threatens European phenol market

Market outlook: Benzene rise threatens European phenol market

Low cost imports and difficult trading conditions are cited by INEOS as the reason for closure of their 300,000 tonne/year vinyl acetate momomer (VAM) plant in Hull, UK. Celanese may also be closing their Spanish plant. This represents a combined loss of 50% capacity in Europe.