China’s PVC and PET Exports Surge; Numerous Imports Drop

China’s exports of PVC and PET surged in April 2011. Imports of numerous products fell sharply during the month.  Despite the declines, import totals YTD for many products remained close to last year’s  high levels.

After rebounding in March from a holiday low in February, China’s imports of nearly all the products ITP monitors fell in April, with particularly steep declines on imports of HDPE, polypropylene, propylene, styrene and ethylene glycol. Note, however, that this pattern was largely similar to last year’s, when imports of many products also increased in March and slowed in April.

China’s imports year to date through April of many products did not change sharply from last year.

Percentage changes April YTD versus the prior year on all polyolefin imports except LDPE ranged narrowly from -9% to +10%: HDPE, 1.16 M tons,  down 9%; LLDPE, 806 K tons, down 9%; polypropylene, 1.3 M tons, down 4%; propylene copolymers, 357 K tons, up 10%. LDPE imports dropped to 403 K tons, down 37%. Imports from Saudi Arabia of all the polyolefins except LDPE increased.

China’s imports of uncompounded PVC totaled 442 K tons YTD, up 10%, the US the top supplier.

Imports of MEG totaled 2.2 M tons, down 5%; DEG, 181 K tons, down 1%. Imports of both of these products from Saudi Arabia increased. Propylene imports totaled 559 K tons, up 11% YTD; styrene imports were 1.2 M tons, down 5%.

China exported 309 K tons of PET through March, up 46%. Exports of uncompounded PVC totaled 118 K tons YTD, up 68%.

[important]This information is from ITP’s newsletters on global trade in polymers and chemicals, available by subscription monthly or quarterly.[/important]

Jean J. Sudol
International Trader Publications, Inc.
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