Ethylene Oxide Price Trend and Forecast

Regional Market Overview

Get the latest insights on price movement and trend analysis of Ethylene Oxide in different regions across the world (Asia, Europe, North America, Latin America, and the Middle East & Africa).

Ethylene Oxide Price Trend for the Q1 of 2024


In China, during the first quarter of 2024, the price of ethylene oxide in China experienced a slight increase, as tight supply in certain regions due to steady domestic production and maintenance plans for individual units depleted the inventories.

Ethylene Oxide Price Trends

The downstream industries also saw a rebound in prices, while related products like ethylene glycol began to move southwards, leading to a varying trend in the demand dynamics of the market. Overall, demand for downstream monomers was average, with good demand for polyethers, esters, and other materials purchasing ethylene oxide.

The start of terminal real estate construction, however, boosted the momentum of the market while factors related to production and output rates remained under the bar as spring festivities and the Chinese New Year season halted operational activities. However, cautiousness within the downstream infrastructure industry regarding high-priced monomers may limit upward price trends for ethylene oxide raw material.


In the first quarter of 2024, European chemical and resin markets are witnessing greater spot price volatility due to increased reliance on spot volumes by buyers and reduced contract commitments compared to previous quarters, supporting an uptrend in the prices of ethylene oxide. However, in the initial phase of the quarter, the buyers shifted away from pricier European contracts towards cheaper spot volumes, often imported from producers in the US or the Middle East.

However, import delays, Red Sea freight chaos, production issues, and industrial action have contributed to a rise in the demand for domestically produced quantities and raised the pricing trajectory of ethylene oxide. Despite these changes, Europe's aging infrastructure, dependence on costly naphtha-based feedstocks, and competition with Asia and the US continued to pose challenges to the region's chemical industry.

North America

In the first quarter, the global ethylene oxide market witnessed a steady rise in prices driven by supply-demand imbalances, increased production costs, and rising trading uncertainties. In the US, ethylene oxide prices surged by a noticeable margin as compared to Q4 of 2023 as the cost of its feedstock inclined by several folds. The rising geopolitical tensions, notably the conflict between Russia and Ukraine, contributed to an expected increase in the US.

Ukrainian drone attacks on Russian refining facilities exacerbated issues in the crude oil market, further affected by the Red Sea crisis. Despite this, an incline in freight rates, such as those from China to North America and North Europe to North America, further raised the overall cost of production and raised the bar for traders.

Analyst Insight

According to Procurement Resource, the price trend of Ethylene Oxide is estimated to further incline with the increase in the prices of feedstock ethylene and persistent challenges in the global supply trends of the region.

Ethylene Oxide Price Trend for the October - December of 2023


Ethylene Oxide is an important petrochemical that is industrially derived by oxidizing the hydrocarbon ethane. Ethylene Oxide plays a critical role in the plastics and polymer industry, so the market demands for Ethylene Oxide usually vary between moderate and high levels. However, because of its origin, the crude oil prices also impact the Ethylene Oxide market trend massively. During the final quarter of the year 2023, the Ethylene Oxide prices oscillated for the entire period.

The fall in the crude oil prices pushed the Ethylene Oxide prices down at first in the Chinese market as the first two months witnessed a downfall of around 7%. However, the downstream demands balanced the trade situation in the following month by pushing the prices up again slightly. Still, the overall market sentiments were largely downward wavering.

The Chinese market witnessed its monthly average prices going from around 922 USD/MT in October to around 898 USD/MT in December of 2023. On the other hand, the Indian market witnessed a consistent incline throughout the said period as the monthly average prices went from about 748 USD/MT in October to around 772 USD/MT in December, yielding an appreciation of about 3%.


The European Ethylene Oxide market also registered mixed market trend during the given period. The first half of the fourth quarter was firmer than the second half. The positive demand dynamics at the beginning of the quarter pushed the prices up; however, the approaching holiday season brought these industrial activities to a short-term halt, which again pushed the market trend downwards. Overall, varying price curve was observed throughout the quarter.

North America

Influenced by global trend, the American Ethylene Oxide market also exhibited short-range variations in the price graph during the said period. Plunging crude oil prices pushed the prices down; however, the market demands provided some relief. The general market sentiments were largely mixed throughout Q4’23.

Analyst Insight

According to Procurement Resource, the Ethylene Oxide price trend are likely to follow a similar fluctuating pattern in the coming quarter as the current market drivers do not suggest much change in the dynamics going forward.

Ethylene Oxide Price Trend for the July - September of 2023


The price graph of ethylene oxide registered an upward growth in the Chinese domestic market during the said period. Despite the dull demands from the downstream ethoxylates and ethylene glycol markets, the price trend for ethylene oxide inclined considering the dramatic rise in the feedstock prices.

With Saudia Arabia and Russia committing to further production cuts to stabilize their internal economies and the current global oil markets, petrochemical and its allied sectors were affected worldwide. The rise in upward cost pressure was the main reason behind the prices in ethylene oxide prices.

The spot prices of ethylene oxide went from around 831 USD/MT in July’23 to around 889 USD/MT in September’23 in the Chinese domestic market. A similar trend was observed in the Indian domestic market, where the ethylene oxide prices went from around 675 USD/MT in July’23 to around 715 USD/MT in September’23.


A mixed price sentiment was witnessed for the ethylene oxide market in the European markets. Initially, the prices tumbled, given the high inflation rates and reduced buyer’s confidence in the market. The cautious buying activity kept the spot prices at bay. However, towards the end of the third quarter, the prices began to rise, given the increase in upstream cost pressure.

The rise in naphtha prices in accordance with the crude oil production cuts impacted industries worldwide. Further, a slight push from the demand side was also visible towards the end of said quarter. Hence, these two factors immensely directed the price graph of ethylene oxide towards the higher side by the end of Q3’23.

North America

The price trend for ethylene oxide fluctuated throughout the US domestic market throughout the third quarter of 2023. Initially, the prices remained on the lower side of the curve given the reduced demands, high inflation, and hiked interest rates amidst struggling consumption/purchasing capacities. However, towards the end of the third quarter, the demand increased, and the supply contracted. The production cuts by OPEC+ and Russia impacted the petrochemical sector worldwide. Also, the maintenance shutdowns impacted the price analysis of ethylene oxide.

Analyst Insight

According to Procurement Resource, the price trend for ethylene oxide are expected to rise further, given the current economic scenario. The production cuts will heavily impact the supplies, and with the winter months approaching, demands are likely to increase.

Ethylene Oxide Price Trend for the First Half of 2023


The ethylene oxide market in the Asian Pacific region showcased a fluctuating trajectory in the first two quarters of 2023. In the first quarter, the spot prices in China inclined from around 907 USD/MT in January to 1036 USD/MT in March. As the cost of energy production fluctuated heavily, the rising demand from the glycol industry aided the price incline. But in the second quarter, the price began to decline because of the stockpiling of inventories owing to feeble demand from the end-user industries. As a result, the spot prices of ethylene oxide settled at approximately 842 USD/MT in June’23.


In European nations, the price trend for ethylene oxide mirrored the trend observed in the Asian region. The prices struggled due to weak market sentiments and plunging demand from the glycol sector. The production costs were, however, stable in the region initially. During the middle of the first quarter and throughout the second quarter, the prices gained and maintained their momentum with the required support from the rising crude oil and end-user sector. The European region seemed reluctant to import raw materials from Russia, and as a result, the price trend of the commodity soared.

North America

A fluctuating trend was recorded in the ethylene oxide market in North America during the said period. In the initial months of 2023, the prices declined significantly, attributed to the EPA regulations over the production of ethylene oxide. The EPA proposed the harmful effects of this commodity and its contribution to producing carcinogens which impacted the market negatively.

The price trend, however, surged in the later months due to the limited availability of ethylene oxide as many manufacturers had to halt their production. In addition, the feedstock ethylene market also supported the surge in prices and led to the northward movement of ethylene oxide prices.

Analyst Insight

According to Procurement Resource, the price trend for Ethylene oxide are estimated to improve in the upcoming quarter as the rebounding demand and the inclining upstream cost pressure seems to support the rising prices.

Ethylene Oxide Price Trend for the Second Half of 2022


The price trend for ethylene oxide exhibited a declining trend in the Asia-Pacific region. This decline was majorly attributed to the shutdown of production plants in Japan and the rise in inflation in the Asian region. The prices were also affected by the destocking of the product by the producers and decreased demand from the downstream industries. The prices marginally improved during the end of Q4, however, overall, the ethylene oxide prices kept low.


The prices of ethylene oxide declined gradually as the feedstock prices decreased in the region. The supply remained strong amid the declining demand which led to the rise in inventories. Another factor contributing to the decreasing prices was the regulation of the EU Commission on the use of ethylene oxide in food products. The weak offtakes, decreased feedstock, cuts in production costs, and reduction in input costs negatively affected the market and in turn, the price trend of ethylene dioxide followed a downward trajectory.

North America

Ethylene oxide prices declined in the North American region as a result of weak sentiments from the market. The region saw an increase in inventories, sudden shutdowns, and disrupted transportation which negatively affected the ethylene oxide market. The price trend of ethylene oxide also suffered due to the EPA regulations on ethylene oxide emissions which hit the demand from the importers severely. The falling prices of crude oil and gas further contributed to the decline in ethylene oxide price trend.

Analyst Insight

According to Procurement Resource, the price trend for Ethylene Oxide are expected to fluctuate in the upcoming quarter. The coming months are likely to witness strong EPA regulations, uncertain energy production costs, and ripple effects from the ongoing Russia-Ukraine war which will affect ethylene oxide prices.

For the Second Quarter of 2022


During the said quarter, the overall market for the chemical remained stagnant. Due to the volatile nature of global crude oil prices, the Asian petrochemicals industry suffered. The primary feedstock ethylene’s price weakened in the said quarter, averaging 1166-1176 USD/MT CFR Northeast Asia.

The high input costs and the muted market demand affected the prices of the chemical. Also, due to the below optimum polyester and plastic demand in the Chinese market, all ethylene oxide derivatives like ethylene glycol prices suffered. Per ton price of ethylene oxide averaged 7350 RMB in the Chinese domestic arena.


Due to the continuing Russian geopolitical stance, Europe is witnessing a record-breaking rise in commodity prices and energy crises. The runaway inflation coupled with rising interest rates globally has triggered the market fear of recession. The prices of feedstock ethylene weakened during the said quarter. Still, the price trend of ethylene glycol stood firm in the European domestic market because of the strong demand from the downstream polymer and polyester industries.

North America

The price trend of ethylene oxide continuously witnessed fluctuations in the US domestic arena during this quarter. Initially, the prices remained strong due to the tight supply and steady market demand. However, the upstream industries' inability to keep up with the explosive demands from the downstream sectors caused the prices to fall as the market equilibrium distorted due to the supply-demand mismatch paradox.

Analyst Insight

According to Procurement Resource, ethylene oxide prices will likely decline in the coming quarter. The decreasing feedstock ethylene prices and reduced offtakes from the market are a few reasons behind this decrease.

For the First Quarter of 2022


The spot price of ethylene oxide in March 2022 was 8200 RMB/MT in the domestic markets of China. The ethylene market has been quite turbulent lately owing to the widespread demand, and the rising prices of international crude oil futures. The breakdown of the Caspian oil pipeline between Russia and Kazakhstan through OPC also heightened fears of short-term supply tensions.

For the Fourth Quarter of 2021


All through the fourth quarter of 2021, the ethylene oxide sector in Asia Pacific had conflicting sentiments. Due to coal shortages, China began to feel the effects of the energy crisis, and power rationing hampered operational rates at a number of crackers across the country. Furthermore, the resurrection of COVID, as well as harsher Chinese government standards, exacerbated the Asia Pacific freight crisis, with freight costs above 20000 USD/40ft container, affecting arbitrage from the foreign market.

As a result of the ripple effect, bids in the Chinese domestic market crested at historic highs during the last week of October, with the Ex-Shanghai discourse for technical quality soaring to 1530 USD/MT. However, the Chinese government's continued efforts to reduce power rationing lowered inflation in the domestic market, and producer quotations dropped by 22.5% by the end of the quarter.


The European market for the chemical remained stabilized in the 4th quarter of 2021, owing to the prolonged energy crisis in the home market, which weighed on production capacity proportionally due to rising energy costs. Due to low natural gas stocks, several market participants predicted that the present trend would continue until the middle of the next quarter.

Furthermore, the large drop in the arbitrage from Europe was aided by congestion, restricted access to freight vessels, and expensive rates for Asia Pacific delivery. Ethylene oxide prices in the European domestic market remained buoyant as a result, and the FD Hamburg discourse was concluded at 1795 USD/MT during the quarter ending.

North America

After the operating rates in the United States began to improve post-hurricane season, the North American ethylene oxide industry began to stabilise in the fourth quarter of 2021. Furthermore, the dramatic drop in the gap from the US was aided by congestion, restricted supply of freight vessels, and expensive rates for Asia Pacific delivery.

Furthermore, throughout the fourth quarter, cost support from upstream ethylene plummeted dramatically. The offered bids fell proportionally as a result, and the FOB Gulf coast spot discourse was decided at 1510 USD/MT towards the conclusion of the quarter.

Latin America

Braskem, a petrochemical company, said its fourth-quarter resins sales volume in Brazil declined 13% year over year, owing to lower demand in the Brazilian market. Braskem's ethylene plants in Brazil had an average utilization rate of 85% in the third quarter, which was unchanged from the previous year but 5 percentage points higher than the third quarter.

According to the company's operating forecast, ethylene production volume remained steady on a yearly basis. Mexico's polyethylene production increased by 71% from the fourth quarter of 2020, with the country's plant utilization rate improving by 34 percentage points, to 8%.

The increase was due to the suspension of operating processes in December 2020 due to a natural gas transit disruption.  The increase in ethylene production led to an easy availability of feedstock for ethylene oxide production.

For First, Second and Third Quarters of 2021


The output in Asia remained low due to plant outages and a lack of feed ethylene throughout the region. Demand in China fell over the Chinese holidays, but it quickly rebounded, putting downward pressure on supply in the local market.

Plant failures in the United States caused a global shortage of most chemicals, while demand in the Asian market remained strong, resulting in higher prices for feedstock ethylene and downstream MEG. In India, the bulk price of the chemical rose by 34.5% since January, settling at 1261.3 USD/MT at the end of March.

During the second quarter, ethylene oxide prices fell significantly in the Asian market, owing to increasing stock availability and lower demand from downstream firms. Meanwhile, the price of ethylene fluctuated due to the regular price changes in crude oil prices.

The quick recurrence of the epidemic in India lowered demand from downstream sectors, despite ample supply availability. However, the price of ethylene remained volatile in India, impacting the price of ethylene oxide in the country. As a result, prices in India were recorded around 1214 USD/MT in the last week of June.

During the third quarter, the Asian market displayed conflicting attitudes. The Chinese market saw an increase in the pricing, accompanied by supply chain disruptions caused by congestion at many Chinese ports. Furthermore, a reduction in production rates, following China's energy crisis, wreaked havoc on ethylene oxide prices in this timeframe.

In India, prices rose somewhat from July to August, owing to stable feedstock costs and strong demand from downstream MEG goods. The prices, on the other hand, fell in September. As a result, the total market for the chemical remained stable in this quarter, as domestic leagues sold the bulk of the produce to domestic consumers at a predetermined pricing. Per ton price in India rose to 1350 USD in August from 1302 USD in July, and then fell to 1297.04 USD in September.


Despite the US gulf storm and strong export demand to Asia, European demand for the chemical remained strong throughout the quarter. Due to a lack of feedstock across the region, ethylene oxide prices remained erratic. Ethylene demand remained high from segments such as PVC, forcing producers to raise prices.

Due to production interruptions at some upstream ethylene plants, ethylene oxide supply became tighter. The unexpected three-week-long force majeure at LG Chemical's Yeosu cracker owing to a fire outbreak at the company's central control unit continued to impact upstream supply. During the quarter, unexpected plant turnarounds resulted in a loss of around 400 KT of ethylene production.

Due to strong demand for glycols and limited product supplies, the price skewed toward the Asian region. For the majority of the month, the Indian market remained relatively unaltered from the previous quarter, with market fundamentals being balanced. In India, the price increased slightly in Q4 2020, but remained stable at 1078.

USD/MT. Firmer raw material costs and rising demand from downstream MEG producers fueled the upward trend.

During the third quarter, ethylene oxide prices in Europe rose marginally, owing to strong demand from downstream glycols and ethoxylates, as well as a rise in the price of ethylene. Furthermore, the increase in the price of ethylene oxide and its derivatives in Europe was caused by high freight costs and reduced imports due to container scarcity. Manufacturers obtained promising profit margins, which were followed by robust demand from downstream sectors. FD Hamburg price settled at 1790 USD/MT, an increase of 160 USD/MT.

North America

Owing to strong demand fundamentals and damaged production capacity due to severe winter storms in North America, ethylene oxide prices rose steadily on a daily basis. Climate disaster triggered the closure of several sizable ethylene factories. The average price witnessed a dramatic jump of 48.9%, which settled at 1605 USD/MT in March, due to strong demand from Asian countries combined with limited inventory levels across the area.

Several firms reopened their plants in the second quarter after a long hiatus, boosting the country's supply of feedstock chemicals. As a result, ethylene oxide prices in the United States fluctuated from month to month in the second quarter of 2021. Demand remained strong on the domestic and global markets, particularly in Europe, where there was an acute shortage. In May, prices dropped dramatically as a result of greater supply of ethylene following the restoration of refinery operations in the United States. As a result, during May in the United States, ethylene glycol prices reached 1210 USD/MT.

Demand for the chemical and its downstream derivatives remained strong throughout the third quarter, contributing to an increase in the price. Furthermore, as a result of the Ida hurricane in August, numerous firms were forced to close down their production plants, adding to the strain on the chemical’s market. FOB-US ethylene oxide prices were estimated at 1620 USD/MT in September, up 180 USD/MT from July, owing to lower production rates and increased demand in the region.

Latin America

Ultrapar sold Oxiteno, the only South American producer of ethylene oxide and derivatives, for USD 1.3 billion in August to Indorama Ventures of Thailand. Oxiteno was the only South American manufacturer of ethylene oxide and monoethylene glycol, a critical PET resin intermediate.

Oxiteno has sites in Brazil, Latin America, and the United States. Oxiteno sold 372,000t of products in the first half, comprising commodities and specialty. It was up 7% from the early half of 2020, with domestic sales up 10%, primarily to the agrochemicals, paints, and varnish industries. In the first half of 2021, exports to the United States accounted for a 1% increase in total exports.

Ethylene Oxide Price Trend for the Year 2020


Due to production interruptions at some upstream ethylene facilities, the supply of ethylene oxide tightened. The unexpected three-week-long force majeure at LG Chemical's Yeosu cracker owing to a fire outbreak at the company's central control unit continued to impact upstream supply. During the quarter, unexpected plant turnarounds resulted in ethylene output losses of roughly 400 KT.

Due to strong demand for glycols and constrained product availability, the price in Asia has risen. For the majority of the month, the Indian industry remained relatively unaltered from the previous quarter, with market fundamentals being balanced. In Q4 2020, the price in India increased slightly, maintaining an average of 1078 USD/MT. Driving the trajectory were the firm feedstock costs and increasing demand from the downstream MEG producers.


The chemical’s supplies tightened in the fourth quarter due to a shortage of ethylene, whose inventories were low, limiting product availability to various downstream manufacturing units. The closure of the Borealis Ethylene Cracker in Stenungsund (Sweden) in December aggravated market shortages.

Upstream supply constraints and a rise in crude futures pushed the spot prices higher across Europe. Throughout the quarter, regional traders reported increased demand from the downstream detergents and medicinal industries.

North America

The availability of upstream ethylene had been steadily declining in North America, with the majority of demand channeled to the downstream glycols sector. After hurricane-related disruptions in the United States, operating rates at upstream units were heard increasing.

Formosa's new factory in Texas went online in early December, and the company ramped up production levels in Q1 FY21 due to anticipated pent-up demand. Due to strong demand for glycol ethers used in disinfectants and cleaning chemicals, the inventory levels in numerous downstream sectors decreased, although pricing remained elevated due to continuing transportation restrictions.

Latin America

In October 2020, Brazilian ethylene prices increased significantly since the beginning of the year, reaching their highest levels since 2018.This rise in cost directly affected the price of all ethylene products and derivatives, including ethylene oxide prices.

Procurement Resource provides latest prices of Ethylene Oxide. Each price database is tied to a user-friendly graphing tool dating back to 2014, which provides a range of functionalities: configuration of price series over user defined time period; comparison of product movements across countries; customisation of price currencies and unit; extraction of price data as excel files to be used offline.

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Ethylene Oxide, an organic compound, is a cyclic ether and the simplest epoxide. It is a colourless gas with ether-like odour. It is a versatile compound that is used as an intermediate in the manufacture of other chemicals of industrial importance. One of the most important derivatives of this chemical is ethylene glycol, which is further utilised in the production of PET resin. A small but significant use of the chemical is as a sterilizing agent particularly in the healthcare industry.

Product Details

Report Features Details
Product Name Ethylene Oxide
Industrial Uses Ethylene glycol, Glycol ethers, Ethanolamines, Ethoxylates, Acrylonitrile, Sterilizing and disinfecting agent, Fumigant, Antibiotics
Chemical Formula C2H4O
Synonyms 75-21-8, Oxirane, 1,2-Epoxyethane, Epoxyethane, Oxacyclopropane, Dimethylene oxide, Epoxide, EO or EtO
Molecular Weight 44.05 g/mol
Supplier Database Shell Chemical Company (Royal Dutch Shell Plc), LyondellBasell Industries NV, BASF SE, Linde AG
Region/Countries Covered Asia Pacific: China, India, Indonesia, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Japan, Philippines, Vietnam, Iran, Thailand, South Korea, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Malaysia, Nepal, Taiwan, Sri Lanka, UAE, Israel, Hongkong, Singapore, Oman, Kuwait, Qatar, Australia, and New Zealand

Europe: Germany, France, United Kingdom, Italy,  Spain, Russia, Turkey, Netherlands, Poland, Sweden, Belgium, Austria, Ireland Switzerland, Norway, Denmark, Romania, Finland, Czech Republic, Portugal and Greece

North America: United States and Canada

Latin America: Brazil, Mexico, Argentina, Columbia, Chile, Ecuador, and Peru

Africa: South Africa, Nigeria, Egypt, Algeria, Morocco
Currency US$ (Data can also be provided in local currency)
Supplier Database Availability Yes
Customization Scope The report can be customized as per the requirements of  the customer
Post-Sale Analyst Support 360-degree analyst support after report delivery

Note: Our supplier search experts can assist your procurement teams in compiling and validating a list of suppliers indicating they have products, services, and capabilities that meet your company's needs.

Production Processes

  • Production of Ethylene Oxide via Oxidation

In this process, ethylene is utilised as a starting material. It undergoes the oxidation process in the presence of silver catalyst to finally produce Ethylene Oxide.


The displayed pricing data is derived through weighted average purchase price, including contract and spot transactions at the specified locations unless otherwise stated. The information provided comes from the compilation and processing of commercial data officially reported for each nation (i.e. government agencies, external trade bodies, and industry publications).

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