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China leads in growth of polymers & plastic products

China, after liberalization of economy in 1979, has grown by leaps and bounds. From a modest plastics consumption level of about 1 million ton in 1979, it has attained a level of 38 million tons in 2005. Consumption has achieved 15% average growth in the period of 1979 to 2005, possibly surpassing consumption levels of Europe and North American countries. Interestingly, China produced 18 million tons of polymer in 2005, and had to import 21 million tons. China therefore continues to depend upon imports for 53% of its requirement of synthetic polymers in 2005. The China Plastics Processing Association revealed this information recently.

Thermoplastic polymer accounted for 33.5 million tons out of the total of 38 million tons, 88% of the total synthetic polymers.

Thermoplastic polymers consumption in China during 2005 is summarized below:
Polymer consumption in China (2005)
PE 10.5 31.4 5.3
PP 8.2 24.5 5.2
PVC 7.9 23.6 6.5
PS 2.4 7.2 1.1
ABS 3.1 9.3 1.1
Total Commodity polymers 32.1 96.0 19.2
PA 0.22 0.7  
PC 0.75 2.2  
POM 0.22 0.7  
PBT/PET 0.12 0.4  
MPPO 0.04 0.1  
Total ETP 1.35 4.0  
Grand total 33.45 100.0  

It is expected that the demand from 2005 to 2010 will grow at an average rate of 10% and will continue to grow at least at 8% from 2010 until 2015. Synthetic polymers are expected to achieve an average growth of 9% from 2005 until 2015, catapulting demand in China to almost 90 million tons by 2015.

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