Japan's ethylene production in 1996 to record 7,130,000 tons

Feb 18, 1997 01:00 AM

Feb. 4, 1997 Japan's ethylene production in December 1996 amounted to 662,000 tons, according to the Ministry of International Trade and Industry. Production for the whole of 1996 hit a record high of 7,131,000 tons, up 2.7 % over the 6,944,000 tons of 1995. Production in the second half of 1996 also set a new high of 3,638,000 tons, up 6.3 % over the same period of 1995. Shipments of petrochemicals were pushed up by a moderate increase in domestic demand for commodity synthetic resins and growth in exports of vinyl chloride monomer, polyvinyl chloride and polyolefins to China and Southeast Asia.
Japan's demand for petrochemicals in terms of ethylene in the third quarter of 1996 climbed 3.5% over the same period of 1995, while exports jumped 23.9%. Domestic demand showed year-on-year rises of 3.8% in October and 0.8% in November, while exports recorded increases of 21.1% in October and 7.6% in November. Exports started to score double-digit growth in July with the revival of China's buying for versatile resins in addition to the weakening of the yen's value.
The Japanese petrochemical industry is seen entering a rather difficult phase in 1997, as Asia's economic growth is forecast to slow down. Exports this year are not expected to remain as high as last year because Japanese petrochemical makers are reducing the operating rates of their ethylene plants in response to the sharp rise in naphtha prices.

Source: not available
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