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Tuesday, June 6, 2023

Styrene supply and demand pattern variable

In recent years, the domestic styrene industry has developed steadily. By the end of 2018, the annual domestic production capacity reached 9.5 million tons. In the next few years, the production capacity of styrene will continue to expand, the downstream demand will be insufficiently followed, the import volume will be significantly reduced, and the supply and demand pattern will show significant changes.

Significant growth in production capacity

In 2018, a total of 760,000 tons/year of styrene capacity was added to Qingdao Bay and Anhui Wuyuan. In the next few years, with the hot construction of the refining and chemical integration project, a number of large-scale styrene new installations such as Hengli Petrochemical and Zhejiang Refining and Chemical Co., Ltd. will be launched, together with new construction plans of other enterprises, and the styrene plant planned to be put into production this year and next only. The total production capacity has exceeded 5 million tons / year, and domestic styrene supply will increase significantly.

It is noteworthy that the proportion of devices using propylene oxide/styrene (PO/SM) co-oxidation method is significantly improved in the planned new installations, and the co-oxidation method is selected for Wanhua Chemical and Tianjin Huahua. Compared with the traditional ethylbenzene dehydrogenation method, the investment and operating costs of the co-oxidation method are reduced.

Previously, the co-oxidation process has been in the hands of foreign companies, such as Lyondell Basel, Shell, Repsol and so on. On January 5 this year, Wanhua Chemical’s Ethylbenzene Co-oxidation High-efficiency Green Preparation of Propylene Oxide Complete Technology Project with Independent Intellectual Property Rights passed the appraisal of the results of the China Petroleum and Chemical Industry Federation and will be applied to the company’s future construction. On the PO/SM device, this will break the technological monopoly of foreign companies.

In the traditional ethylbenzene dehydrogenation process, the use of raw materials is also more variable. More and more companies have begun to choose dry gas as a source of ethylene for raw materials, in order to achieve high value-added comprehensive utilization of refinery dry gas and promote resource conservation.

Insufficient demand follow-up

Although the production capacity of styrene will increase substantially, the overall demand side is insufficient. According to industry analysts, the newly added capacity of ABS, EPS and PS as the main downstream of styrene is less in 2018. In the next few years, the production capacity of these areas is also much lower than that of the raw material styrene. The support is insufficient. Imports are significantly reduced

In addition to capacity and demand, there is also a significant impact on the supply and demand pattern of styrene. As we all know, China’s styrene relies heavily on imports, while the products originated in South Korea, Taiwan and the United States account for half of China’s imported styrene market.

On June 22, 2018, the Ministry of Commerce issued an announcement on the final stipulation of imported styrene originating in South Korea, Taiwan and the United States, and imposed anti-dumping duties from the next day. With the implementation of anti-dumping and the increase of domestic production capacity, the import volume of styrene will be significantly reduced, and domestic styrene will become the new darling of the market. This can be seen from last year’s customs data. According to statistics, from July to November 2018, China imported 1,243,200 tons of styrene, a year-on-year decrease of 11.3%.

On the whole, with the successive launch of the refining and chemical integration project, the supporting styrene plant is expected to significantly expand domestic production capacity. At the same time, the anti-dumping policy on products in South Korea and the United States has led to a rapid increase in the proportion of domestic styrene in the market, and the supply pattern of the styrene industry has undergone major changes. For China’s styrene imports of 3 million to 4 million tons per year in recent years, if new capacity can be released in the next two years.

Translated by Google Translator from http://www.cria.org.cn/newsdetail/47729.html

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