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China’s polymer imports slump in Q1

  • 04/05/2016 (05:01)
China’s polymer imports hit an all time high for the year 2015, according to ChemOrbis Import Statistics. However, import statistics for the first three months of 2016 show a slump of 11% when compared to the same period of last year.

On a product basis, all polymers displayed decreases in Q1 except for LDPE. China’s reduced appetite for imports was indeed expected in line with the growing domestic capacities of the country.

The PE market saw relatively smaller decreases in imports in Q1. HDPE imports lost 4% while LLDPE imports shrank by 10% in the first three months of 2016 in a yearly comparison. As mentioned above, LDPE was the only exception amongst all polymers as imports increased by 7% year over year.

In the PP market, China added increasingly more capacities in 2015 and there is more to come in 2016. This was reflected on the homo PP imports as there was a 27% decrease in Q1 when compared to the same period of last year. Copolymer imports posted a relatively smaller decrease of 12% year over year as the new capacities are mostly focused on homo PP production.

PVC imports registered the most remarkable loss in Q1 as they retreated by 30% when compared to the same period of last year. The yearly reduction of PS imports for Q1 is not small either at 24%.

Considering the increasing domestic production, players expect to see China’s demand for imports shrink further in the coming years with the country being expected to reach self-sufficiency in some products like in PP. The country’s slowing economic growth is not supportive of an increase in consumption either. For those sellers losing market share in China, players will be watching to see where they divert their cargoes.

You can visit ChemOrbis Import Statistics to see the exact figures for China’s imports by origin and by product. You can also run your own graphs and make yearly, quarterly and monthly comparisons for different countries in ChemOrbis Stats Wizard.
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