ITP’s analysis of global trade projects a 1% increase in the volume of MEG traded in 2014 versus 2013, to 14.5 million tons. A small increase in global trade volume generally indicates an equally small increase in global demand.
Major trends in 2014 included a moderate expansion in Asia-Pacific intra-regional trade, a small increase in imports into that region, larger gains on imports into Western and Eastern Europe but much lower imports into North America. Exports from the Middle East were unchanged; shipments from North America posted a strong gain.
China, the world’s largest importer, imported 8.5 million tons of MEG in 2014, up 2%. India and Indonesia were much higher growth, but smaller volume, import markets in the Asia-Pacific region.
The increase in North America’s exports mainly reflected substantially higher shipments to Asia-Pacific and also, with smaller volumes, to Western and Eastern Europe; exports to Latin America declined.
Middle East exports to Asia-Pacific were up slightly but this gain, and also a strong increase to Eastern Europe, was offset by declines to Western Europe and North America.