Get the latest insights on price movement and trend analysis of Propylene in different regions across the world (Asia, Europe, North America, Latin America, and the Middle East & Africa).
Propylene Price Trend for the First Half of 2023
In the first two quarters of 2023, the price trends for Propylene had a good initial start as the prices in India rose from around 851 USD/MT (CFR, India) in January to 904 USD/MT (CFR, India) in March’23. This surge was attributed to the high demand for the product from the downstream industries and the ease of covid restrictions. A big slump was, however, observed in the second quarter as the prices declined owing to dwindling demand. The producers were forced to shut their production routes to stabilize the market sentiments. Further, the uncertain crude oil cost led to a series of ups and downs in production costs. As a result of all these challenges, the propylene prices in China settled around 897 USD/MT towards the end of June’23.
The European region witnessed a fluctuating trend in the prices of Propylene in the first two quarters of 2023. The prices were majorly affected by the high manufacturing activities and energy costs, along with regular imports from overseas markets. The demand side of the spectra, however, was stable amid strong supply. But this incline was rather short-lived, and the propylene prices began to fall in the second quarter. With the decline in demand, the producers were forced to decrease their production rates, and the crude oil prices also decreased, which resulted in the dip in the prices of Propylene.
A mixed trend in the prices of Propylene was observed in the first and second quarters of 2023. In the initial months of 2023, the prices declined as the region had an abundant product supply and stagnant demand due to weak support from the end-consumer sector. In the later months, the prices gained momentum as they surged with the rise in crude oil prices and a hike in the interest rates. The downstream resins and packaging markets still remained stagnant throughout the period.
According to Procurement Resource, the price trends for Propylene are estimated to showcase a mixed trend in the upcoming months. The demand from the end-user sectors seems stable, but with rising crude oil prices and uncertain production rates, the price of Propylene is expected to fluctuate.
Propylene Price Trend for the Second Half of 2022
In the last two quarters of 2022, the prices of Propylene showcased a mixed trajectory. The prices were majorly affected by the subdued demand in the regional market and the weak performance of the polymer industry. The manufacturers thus decreased their output rates and adjusted their production in accordance with the market activities. The cost support from the feedstock materials was also weak as the uncertainties in OPEC+ controlled crude oil prices rose in the last two quarters, negatively impacting the propylene market and its price trend.
The propylene market in the third quarter dipped significantly because of the low demand from the domestic region. The prices were also affected by the weak economic activities in Europe, which were a result of the holiday season and the rising threat of recession. However, the price trend for Propylene recovered a little in the fourth quarter as the manufacturers regained their momentum, strengthening the supply sector. The rising inflation rates and high energy costs somehow limited their activities and led to the downward movement of the prices.
In North America, the propylene prices showcased a mixed trend as the prices were highly influenced by the weak cost support from the feedstock materials and feeble demand from domestic and overseas buyers. Amid the soaring inflation and interest rates with low offtakes in the domestic market, the level of inventories rose, which negatively impacted the propylene market. The extreme weather conditions, disruptions in trade chains, and power cuts aided the declining trend in propylene prices.
According to Procurement Resource, the price trends for Propylene are estimated to showcase a mixed trend in the upcoming months as the demand sector seems weak amidst high inflation and slow economic conditions.
For the Second Quarter of 2022
At the beginning of the second quarter of 2022, the prices of propylene soared in the Indian market, due to an increase in upstream naphtha prices. Strong demand amid limited supply from the downstream industries caused the prices to rise. The price trend changed significantly in the following months, backed by increased cracker spreads across the country.
The abundant supply of feedstock crude oil and upstream naphtha assisted the falling price trend at the end of Q2 2022. In the markets of China, the price of propylene changed rapidly due to Covid-19-related restrictions which led to a drop in demand but as the regulations eased the price picked up again. By the end of Q2 2022, the price followed a downtrend in China, as the feedstock crude oil supply from Russia stabilised.
During the start of the second quarter of Q2 2022 as several European countries imposed bans on Russian crude oil and natural gas imports. The tight supply due to the sanctions caused the price of feedstock crude oil to rise which drove up the price of propylene prices in the region.
Prices, however, started to decrease in the next two months. The increased run rates in refineries that manufactured upstream Naphtha as a by-product, were backed by the demand for fuel in Europe. This unexpected rise in the supply of upstream Naphtha advanced the downward trend of propylene prices in June and July in Europe in the year 2022.
The prices of the chemical decreased steadily in the US throughout the second quarter of 2022. Several factors such as Covid-19 lockdowns in China, the war between Ukraine and Russia coupled with inflation contributed to the downward trend in propylene prices.
Polymer Grade propylene was traded at discounted rates during Q2 2022. The discount further widened at the end of the quarter as the cost of propylene dropped even lower backed by weak market sentiments in the US market. PDH margins and increased cracker also supported the downtrend in the US throughout Q2 2022.
According to Procurement Resource, the prices for propylene are expected to see a flumped trend in the next half. The major reason behind the bearish trend for propylene can be chalked to an oversupply of propylene. Moreover, the stockpiles are expected to hit the prices significantly.
For the First Quarter of 2022
In Q1 of 2022, the propylene market accelerated its drop, with the mainstream market price falling to 8,200-8,400 RMB/MT. The price of international crude oil had plummeted, and the downstream polypropylene market remained slow. The recent domestic outbreak had also resurfaced, affecting logistics and manufacturing in certain locations. The market's trade level fell even further, which was terrible for the market, and merchants had to lower their rates to receive orders.
For the Fourth Quarter of 2021
The North-East Asian area saw a progressive change in cracking capacity, with naphtha rapidly surpassing propane as the favored feedstock due to decreasing arbitrage profits on US LPG imports. The import price range for propylene was somewhat wider, with average CFR prices of 1020 USD/MT, up from 1010 USD/MT in Q3, while FOB prices for South Korea were estimated at 1010 USD/MT in Q4, a 25 USD/MT increase over the Q3 average.
India, on the other hand, saw a buyer's market, owing to the fact that the fourth quarter is marked by a lengthy festival season, during which demand for chemicals normally declines. Propylene prices declined from an annual high of 1190 USD/MT in July to 930 USD/MT in December.
During the fourth quarter, European markets saw a progressive movement in imports away from regional markets and toward Asian propylene, owing to larger arbitrage margins. While the average propylene prices sourced domestically were assessed at 1245 USD/MT on an FD Hamburg basis in Q4, the average price of propylene imported from North-East Asia was assessed at 1135 USD/MT on a CIF Hamburg basis. Thus, Asia-sourced propylene was at least 50 to 60 USD/MT cheaper during Q4.
Throughout Q4 of FY21, the North American propylene market demonstrated an unparalleled level of constancy in trend. While the price of refinery grade propylene remained relatively insensitive to downstream market movements, the price of PGP changed in lockstep with downstream polypropylene pricing.
Following a supply-scarce third quarter during which refinery production was impacted and supply networks along the gulf coast were interrupted by hurricane season, the early half of Q4 remained a seller's market.
However, the trend reversed in the second half of Q4, when feedstock naphtha and LPG prices began to fall in the first week of November and maintained their decline through the end of December. The average price of propylene for refinery and polymer grades was 520 USD/MT FAS Houston and 1640 USD/MT FOB Houston, respectively.
For First, Second and Third Quarters of 2021
Supplies in China were scarce in the second quarter of 2021, as numerous refineries and PDH plants in the country completed turnarounds in the first part of the quarter, aided by South Korea's tight market outlook. Due to the high cost of raw materials, some downstream manufacturing units had their profit margins reduced. Price discussions FOB Qingdao resolved at 1281 USD/MT in June.
Prices in the Asia Pacific area were range-bound during the third quarter, as demand for downstream polypropylene increased but supply remained plentiful. However, propylene prices in the domestic market continued to decline, accompanied by reduced demand in some regions of Asia as a result of additional delta variant instances.
In China, conversations of downstream polypropylene remained sparse because to the market's downturn in response to Covid infections. In India as well, enough supply in the face of strong demand drove propylene prices down from 1175 USD/MT to 1158 USD/MT during the third quarter.
Supplies in the European area remained constrained during Q1, as a result of refinery production being decreased due to the continuing pandemic and lockout limitations. Demand, on the other hand, maintained a steady trend throughout the quarter.
Exports migrated away from the United States and toward Asian sources as a result of the US's adverse weather conditions, which reduced freight movement. During the first quarter, the Asian region's supply remained balanced, mainly due to the inclusion of new facilities in China, followed by the restart of significant facilities in South Korea, including LG Chem.
After a turnaround and announced expansion of its ethylene and propylene plant, Yeochun NCC (YNCC) began production in the second half of Q1 2021. However, when the arbitrage between the European and North American regions emerged, Asian producers moved their stockpiles to meet western demand for more income.
Demand in Asia increased significantly throughout the quarter, owing to improved offtakes from the downstream industry. Propylene prices were solid in Q2 due to increased demand and limited supply, with CIF NWE offers ending at 1400-1420 USD/MT, up from a multi-year low in early June.
Supply in Europe increased significantly in the third quarter of 2021, owing to the recovery of PDH plants, crackers, and refineries. Propylene prices in Germany continued their upward trajectory and settled at 1305 USD/MT FD. Hamburg in Q3 2021, followed by a large increase in the up-stream’s pricing.
During the first quarter of 2021, supplies were scarce in the region, constricting margins for downstream derivatives, resulting in an increase in demand, while numerous petrochemicals manufacturing units shut down in the US gulf region due to deep freeze weather.
Domestic PGP prices soared to an all-time high of 1950 USD/MT in mid-February. Market morale improved gradually during the preceding quarter and steadied by the end of April. Demand in the North American area was bolstered by increased inquiries from both the domestic and international markets.
Offtakes from the regional plastic market increased as economies recovered from the impact of COVID. Propylene prices in the US maintained on a downward trend during Q2's first half and then steadied in the second half, with FOB Texas negotiations in June ranging between 710-745 USD/MT. Propylene's general market prognosis in North America improved in the third quarter of 2021.
Polyethylene prices in Latin America fell in the week beginning April 25 due to additional material being available on the market and lower Asian costs. Since early March, the Latin American region relied heavily on imports from Europe and Asia, while the United States' export quantities had been limited, allowing Asian markets to make more competitive offers than the United States.
Under very tight market conditions, the Brazilian plastics sector was beginning to notice the first symptoms of declining demand following a year of price rises and fears of more in the coming days.
Some resin purchasers anticipated Braskem to announce April price increases, after February price increases of 125 USD/MT for polypropylene and March price increases of 320 USD/MT for all PP grades. While some market players anticipated Braskem to hike April prices by up to 15%, others believed prices would remain stable, since worldwide prices had stabilized and domestic demand decreased after several Covid-19 lockdowns were restored in March.
For the Year 2020
China's demand remained relatively consistent, with purchasers reporting the commissioning of two Propane Dehydrogenation (PDH) facilities with a combined nameplate capacity of 1050 KTPA in July. The supply was noted to be tightening across Asia towards the end of Q3, with pricing talks steadily intensifying, notably in northeast Asia.
Numerous scheduled and unforeseen interruptions impacted the operation of Naphtha facilities using fluid catalytic cracking (FCC) and steam cracking technology in Japan. In mid-September, with manufacturers stressing constrained regional supply, CFR China propylene prices were evaluated at 900 USD/MT.
The pricing graph exhibited a rising tendency in July, when it was valued at around USD 780 per tonne FD NWE, before progressively decreasing at the end of the quarter. Propylene prices stabilized in a limited range in the third quarter, with the demand forecast mostly mixed-to-low due to unstable economic conditions.
The product's timely availability was harmed by unanticipated cracker turnarounds in early August, which were addressed by the first half of September. While refineries continued to operate at reduced rates, the major driver of the market, naphtha, was marginally weaker in August than in July.
A series of force majeure declarations in response to storm Laura resulted in a brief disruption of regional supplies. The protracted stoppage of BASF Total's Port Arthur cracker in Texas impacted regional propylene supplies.
US Gulf propylene prices increased as production concerns were resolved and prospects improved as manufacturing activity steadily increased throughout the quarter. Polymer-Grade Propylene (PGP) contract prices in the United States were settled at a one-year high of roughly 715 USD/MT in July, while Chemical-Grade Propylene (CGP) contract prices were evaluated at 683 USD/MT.
Brazil, according to the United Nations' COMTRADE database on international trade, exported propylene and other olefins, prim forms to Peru which totaled USD 48.33 million in 2020. Argentina exported polymers derived from propylene or other olefins in their primary forms to China for a value of USD 18.37 thousand in 2020.
Procurement Resource provides latest prices of Propylene. 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.
Propylene, an unsaturated organic compound, is basically a colourless gas with a faint petroleum like odour. It can be produced as a by-product from naphtha crackers, among other production methods. It is used as the raw material to produce a variety of products and serves as a significant starting material in the petrochemical industry. It is majorly used to produce polypropylene, a polymer used in various end use sectors.
|Industrial Uses||Fuels and fuel additives, Intermediates, Laboratory chemicals, Polymer intermediate, pellet production, Polymers, Processing aids|
|Synonyms||115-07-1, Propene, 1-Propene, Methylethylene, Methylethene|
|Supplier Database||Saudi Basic Industries Corporation (SABIC), INEOS Capital Limited, Dow Chemical Company, LyondellBasell Industries Holdings B.V., BASF SE, Chevron Phillips Chemical Company LLC|
|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.
Steam cracking is the dominant technology for producing propylene. The naphtha is one of the major feedstocks used in the process. Propane obtained from these feedstocks undergoes dehydrogenation to finally produce Propylene, where the by-product is hydrogen.
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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