Polycarbonate is a well-deserved product on the front line. China has become the engine for the growth of global polycarbonate demand. In the past 10 years, the average annual growth rate of apparent consumption has been 8%, the degree of foreign dependence has been above 60%, and the annual import volume has exceeded 1 million tons. ASIACHEM has calculated that the average profit of the polycarbonate industry in the past 5 years has been more than RMB 5,000/ton, and the profit of the highest ton product has exceeded RMB 14,000! Huge business opportunities accompanied by the removal of technical barriers have greatly stimulated the investment enthusiasm of enterprises, and a large number of projects have been launched intensively.
ASIACHEM's statistics show that currently, about 20 projects are progressing in an orderly manner, with a total production capacity of about 3.15 million tons per year, and many companies are on the sidelines. The next few years will be a period of concentrated release of China's polycarbonate production capacity. If all these projects are constructed and put into production, China's total polycarbonate production capacity will exceed 4.5 million tons per year.
By the end of 2021, China's polycarbonate production capacity will reach 2.8 million tons per year, a substantial increase of 88% compared to 2020, almost doubled! According to the project implementation progress, ASIACHEM expects that within 2021, the most likely projects to be put into production include Lutianhua Zhonglan New Materials (2×100,000 tons/year) and Cangzhou Dahua Juhai Branch (100,000 tons/year) , Wanhua Chemical Phase II (130,000 tons/year), Zhongsha (Tianjin) Petrochemical (260,000 tons/year), Pingmei Shenma Carbon Material Phase I (100,000 tons/year), Zhejiang Petrochemical (260,000 tons/year) Tons/year), Hainan Huasheng New Materials (260,000 tons/year), etc., with a total production capacity of 1.31 million tons/year.
In the next few years, China's polycarbonate production capacity will face the risk of surplus, the supply and demand gap will gradually decrease, and the degree of foreign dependence will continue to decline. China's polycarbonate consumption will continue to grow rapidly, and it is the most important engine for global demand growth. Assuming an average annual growth rate of 8%, the apparent demand for polycarbonate will reach 3.5 million tons by 2025. ASIACHEM estimates that China's polycarbonate production will reach 2.7 million tons by then, and the supply and demand gap will be about 800,000 tons.
The profitability of China's polycarbonate industry fluctuates greatly. In the future, companies need to carefully evaluate profitability and be alert to risks. Entering 2020, the price gap between polycarbonate and bisphenol A has rapidly narrowed, and the industry has shifted from break-even to a stage of general loss. On the one hand, the explosive growth of polycarbonate production capacity in the past two years has brought multiple challenges to the industry, and the price of polycarbonate is no longer pompous; on the other hand, driven by the favorable conditions of the epoxy resin industry, the price of bisphenol A has risen like Rainbow, leading to continuous compression of the profit margin of the polycarbonate project.
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