China is likely to commence the operations of 412 petrochemicals projects between 2021 and 2025, accounting for about 50 per cent of the total upcoming petrochemicals project starts in Asia by 2025, according to GlobalData.
This is despite the global shift away from fossil fuels as China continues to register plans for the increased use of petroleum products in the medium term. China’s goal to be the self-sufficient in petrochemicals partly explains this trend.
According to GlobalData’s latest report, ‘Global Petrochemicals New-Build and Expansion Projects Outlook, 2021-2025’ out of the 412 projects expected to commence operations in China, polypropylene projects would be at 45, propylene projects would be at 39, and polyethylene projects at 29.
For example, Exxon Mobil, in November 2021, completed final investment decision to proceed with a multi-billion dollar chemical complex in the Dayawan Petrochemical Industrial Park in Huizhou, Guangdong Province in China.
At the time, Exxon indicated that construction was underway on the greenfield project, which includes a flexible feed steam cracker, three performance polyethylene lines, and two differentiated performance polypropylene lines.
Bhargavi Gandham, Oil & Gas Analyst at GlobalData commented:
“China is one of the leading consumers and importers of petrochemicals globally. The large number of upcoming petrochemicals projects in the country can be ascribed to its goal of reaching petrochemicals self-sufficiency.”Bhargavi Gandham, Oil & Gas Analyst, GlobalData
China to Dominate Global Petrochemical Projects in 2025
GlobalData noted that propylene projects is expected to constitute around 9 per cent of all petrochemical projects’ starts in China during the period 2021 to 2025.
Among the upcoming propylene projects, the Shandong Yulong Petrochemical Longkou Propylene Plant 1 project leads with a production capacity of 2.30 million tonnes per annum (mtpa). The project is presently in the construction stage and is expected to start operations in 2025.
Meanwhile, Asia is expected to lead the global propylene capacity additions with a capacity of 36.65 mtpa by 2025, with China cementing its lead in the region’s capacity additions. Upon projections, the country is expected to lead the global propylene capacity additions by 2025.
According to GlobalData, propylene capacity is poised to see considerable growth of 41 per cent by 2025, potentially increasing from 133.31 million tons per annum (mtpa) in 2020 to 187.74 mtpa in 2025.
Amareswari Kanaparthi, Oil and Gas Analyst at GlobalData said:
“China leads the capacity additions in the region with a capacity of 24.77 mtpa by 2025. Major capacity addition will be from a planned project Shandong Yulong Petrochemical Longkou Propylene Plant 1, with the capacity of 2.30 mtpa by 2025 and is to be operated by Shandong Yulong Petrochemical Ltd.”Amareswari Kanapart, Oil and Gas Analyst, GlobalData
Globally, 1,365 upcoming petrochemicals projects are expected to start operations during the 2021 to 2025 outlook period. Of these, 1,189 represent new build projects and 176 are expansions of existing projects.
In the global petrochemicals sector, the polypropylene segment is expected to witness the highest number of projects with 128 commencing operations between 2021 and 2025. Polyethylene and propylene segments follow with 118 and 99 projects, respectively.
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