Uzbek PP, PE make strong entrance to global markets in 2016
South Korea’s Lotte Chemical began commercial runs at its new petrochemical plant at Surgil, Uzbekistan in January, 2016. As a 50/50 joint venture between Lotte Chemical and Uzbekistan’s state owned Uzbekneftegaz, the plant has a production capacity of 390,000 tons/year of HDPE and 80,000 tons/year of PP, using ethane as feedstock.
According to data from Chinese Customs, China’s imports of Uzbek PP reached 1892 tons in April, from 682 tons in March. The volume was up by almost 64% month over month. With no imports for the origin recorded during the first two months of the year, China imported 2574 tons of Uzbek homo PP so far in 2016.
Meanwhile, China’s HDPE imports from the Uzbek plant stood at 10,825 tons in April, down 10% from the previous month. However, the figure represented a 69% jump compared to February, when Uzbek HDPE materials first started to enter the country and 3300 tons of material was imported from this origin. China imported 26,137 tons of Uzbek HDPE in total so far.
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Turkey’s imports of Uzbek PP and PE were also boosted during April, according to ChemOrbis Import Statistics obtained from TUIK (Turkish Statistical Institute). Turkey imported 2618 tons of PP in the period, up by approximately 80% compared to March.
HDPE imports for the origin showcased a steady rise since January this year. In April, imports of Uzbek HDPE hit 10,704 tons with a 53% increase from the previous month. The figure indicated three digit jumps in February and March.
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To track Turkey’s imports by product, please click here (For members only)
Players concur that PP and HDPE prices for this origin provide a quite competitive edge both in the import and locally-held polymer markets in Turkey. Some sellers report facing competitive pressure given those competitively priced materials amidst the bearish trend and mediocre demand in the country. “The Uzbek plant does not have a large PP capacity whereas HDPE film and blow moulding supply from the plant is comfortable as sellers bring them on a regular contract basis. This weighs down on Turkey’s PE market particularly,” players noted.
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