The Week in Chemistry: US PE, PP spot prices down slightly amid slower trading activity for week of May 22; India to incentivize petrochemicals and green hydrogen, driving refining firms such as Bharat Petroleum to shift focus as energy landscape changes

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LOS ANGELES , June 2, 2023 () –


US Resins

PE trading during the week of May 22 showed less activity, bringing all grades down by about a couple of cents.

HDPE saw the most volume traded, while LDPE film grades showed a modest rebound after sluggish activity in recent weeks.

PE contracts in May are expected to remain flat to about US$0.03/lb lower compared to April levels, according to the PlasticsExchange report.

Nevertheless, producers aim to push for a $0.03/lb contract increase in June.

Spot PP trading also saw more modest demand during the week, leading co-polymer and homo-polymer grades down by a cent.

PP contracts in May are expected to drop by $0.08/lb as polymer-grade propylene costs decrease.

The primary source of this information is Plastics Today.


India Petrochemicals

India-based Bharat Petroleum plans to transition its focus toward petrochemicals, lubricants and renewable products in its US$6.5B expansion strategy.

A changing energy landscape, including the proliferation of electric vehicles, is responsible for the company’s shift, sources say.

Future projects include an ethylene cracking facility and downstream petrochemical production, which will help meet domestic demand, the company noted.

Bharat Petroleum’s strategy also includes investments in two wind power plants to support more environmentally friendly operations.
According to the company’s chairman and managing director G. Krishnakumar, the changes will help prepare for India’s rapidly growing demand across energy and petrochemical products.

The primary source of this information is S&P Global Platts.


India Refining

As India seeks to increase its annual refining capacity to 9 million barrels/day, its goal will likely hinge upon building smaller refineries as land acquisition becomes more difficult, according to reports.

Refiners will also likely invest more in petrochemicals and green hydrogen production, which could receive government support in connection with the nation’s 2070 net zero target.

India also aims to boost its green hydrogen capacity to 5 million tons annually by 2030, says oil minister Hardeep Singh Puri.

The primary source of this information is MRC.


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