Importing polypropylene (PP) from China has become a trend.

Northeast Asia is not only the world’s largest production hub for polypropylene but also the largest consumer. China’s polypropylene consumption accounts for approximately 70% of Northeast Asia’s total. However, the region faces prominent supply-demand imbalances due to slower demand growth compared to supply growth. This has led to changes in global trade flows triggered by China’s capacity expansion

From the perspective of major global importing pp from China:

  1. Middle East resources flow to Turkey, India, Singapore, and then to China, South Korea, and Mexico.
  2. South Korea and Northeast Asia resources flow to Singapore and then further to Southeast Asia, South Asia (India), followed by the Middle East (Saudi Arabia), Turkey, and Europe.
  3. US resources flow to Europe, Mexico, South America, Canada, and China, among others.

As the global regional supply-demand imbalances intensify, regional competition becomes more fierce. China has shifted from being primarily an import destination to an exporting region. However, due to the current disparity in high-end materials between China and regions like Europe, North America, South Korea, and Japan, imports continue to maintain a certain scale.

The polypropylene industry in China is undergoing dramatic changes, and there are several key characteristics regarding exports:

  1. As of 2021, China’s polypropylene exports increased to 1.39 million tons, raising the export base and becoming a trend in the industry.
  2. The export destinations for Chinese polypropylene have become more diversified. In addition to Southeast Asia, there is continuous expansion into South Asia, Africa, and other regions.
  3. Polypropylene export products exhibit a diversified feature. The product range has expanded from wire drawing and fibers to include injection molding, transparent, and copolymer products, showing a growing trend.

Looking at the export volume for 2022-2023, the future path of exports still faces many challenges. For domestic companies to engage in exports, they need to first establish substitutes for imports. China’s major importing countries and regions, such as South Korea, Singapore, the United Arab Emirates, Taiwan, and Saudi Arabia, are engaged in a game of competition with China in terms of product quality and cost due to global competitiveness. The road to product substitution is still in progress.

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