Strong growth in exports of polypropylene out of the Middle East, and, in 2021 and 2022, also out of Asia-Pacific, were prominent trends in a comparison of regional exports from 2018 through 2022. Imports were mixed but generally increased into Western Europe, Eastern Europe, Africa and Latin America over the period.
Global trade in polypropylene (homopolymer, copolymer and PIB) was 31.8 million tons in 2018. Volume then trended upward to a peak of 34.8 million tons in 2021, slipping to 34.1 million tons in 2022.
Global trade is the sum of intra-regional trade plus either exports or imports, which are equal because each export has a corresponding import. Since global trade is driven by demand for widely traded polymers, the trend in the global volume also generally indicates the trend in global demand, given supply availability.
Prominent trends on the export side over the period included strong growth in shipments out of the Middle East and a surge in exports out of Asia-Pacific in 2021 and 2022.
Trends on the import side included: higher imports into Asia-Pacific in 2022 after a steep decline in 2021; a steady expansion in imports into Eastern Europe through 2021 but with a drop in 2022; an upward trend in imports into Africa; increase imports into Western Europe in 2021-2022.
From International Trader Publications’ World Trade Analyses for polypropylene homopolymer, copolymer and polyisobutylene.