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High-end round-table discussion: The future development of polyester + refining and chemical era

2023-03-28 14:58:42


Q1: what is the logic of the refinery to adjust the ratio?

He Zheng: for refineries, it is necessary to adjust the product structure according to the principle of refinement. But the specific situation is different, one is the large structural adjustment, such as the output of aromatics and olefins or the adjustment of the output of oil barrels, which is relatively difficult, and the other is on a small level, such as various industrial chains downstream of olefins.

Q2: Will there be some new changes in the economic balance of oil products and aromatics, including olefins, on the basis of 2022 in 2023?


He Zheng: we have great confidence in the aromatics industry. The most important thing is that aromatics are still the only route for naphtha so far, and olefins will be challenged a little more. The crude oil market may also face great challenges in the future. It is estimated that the demand for crude oil will peak from 2030 to 2035, and then the demand for crude oil will decline, and a new pattern may be ushered in under the appropriate route in the future.


Q3: what do you think of the price difference between PX and naphtha, and what are the factors that cause the current pattern?

Chen Canzhong: we should not pay too much attention to the price difference between the two varieties, but still consider the distribution of the entire industrial chain from the top down. The complexity of PX plant is much higher than that of downstream PTA and polyester, so the recent start-up of several sets of equipment is basically about a month later than expected, and the impact on the company structure is obvious. In my opinion, the faster the growth is, the greatest impact on the market will be. After entering a stable period, the whole processing fee will gradually narrow.

Ge Rui: the core problem is that the supply of PX does not match the high load of polyester, the first point is the demand, the second point, the production enthusiasm of short process PX suppliers is not high, and the third point is the lack of domestic new PX capacity. When the downstream negative feedback occurs, the operating rate of polyester decreases significantly, at this time PX will appear bullish downward trend.


Q4: how to treat the problem of industrial profit distribution? Will PX still become a factor restricting the start of PTA?

Chen Canzhong: I do not quite agree that PX will start the production of PTA. The processing efficiency of domestic refineries is high. In the case of high processing, the processing rate will come back slowly. The rise of PX processing rate is an obvious trend. We should pay attention to the inflection point?

Q5: how to treat the industry competition and partial elimination of PTA?

Xu Jien: first of all, there are new upgrades in every cycle, and each technological progress has a phased breakthrough in cost. The second point is that regional advantages are becoming more and more obvious, and there will be local advantages in logistics costs and packaging costs. The third point is that the advantage of integration is very obvious, and our own industry will look for more methods when it is relatively difficult.

Q6: Will there be any improvement after the tight supply of PTA? Forecast for the performance of supply and demand in the second quarter

Xu Jien: it is expected to be better than before. The whole value chain is expected to be better than anticipation in the second quarter. Oil product inventories in the United States and China are all at a low level, and the amount that can be exported in Mar is also very low. Spot polyester is also relatively strong and exchange warehouse receipts are also relatively small. Polyester market may not face big problem in short run. Operating rate is likely to rise and stocks will fall. Players are expecting the recovery of real estate market. Home textile industry has a marginal driving effect on polyester.

Ge Rui: polyester polymerization rate may be dragged down when the losses are serious and the inventory burden is high. Polyester factories can rely on inventory appreciation to raise prices. Before and after the Qingming Festival, there may some placement of orders for summer. The current peak season is not obvious. Current polyester inventory is not high, the pressure is not very great. The destocking cycle in Europe and the United States has reached a rebound, and this year there is a positive expectation for the macro. Due to the demand for real estate and hotel accommodation, downstream production enterprises will prepare goods under the influence of some pre-demand.

Q7: more and more Chinese enterprises are going out, does it mean that the industrial chain will expand overseas?

Li An: the prevention and control of the epidemic has had a great impact on China's polyester industry in the past three years, especially since the second quarter of last year, with high raw material costs, low operating rate and cash flow, and the demand for China from overseas countries has gradually declined. The trend of the extension of orders from China is very obvious. China's textile industry is slowly moving out, and orders are gradually declining. The polyester industry is very hard at home. It has been expanding abroad, and domestic and overseas enterprises have actively transferred production to Southeast Asia. At present, they have not achieved market economy status. China does not have a competitive advantage over Vietnam in terms of land and energy, and the whole polyester industry driven by raw materials is not optimistic.


Q8: will the export of PET bottle chips continue to grow substantially this year?

Li  An: PET bottle chips are the best variety in the past three years. The new capacity this year has reached 5-6 million tons. The export of PET bottle chips is a major trend. The superposition of weather factors leads to better export data in the first quarter. This year, the demand for PET bottle chips is relatively strong. The massive expansion of demand is the price factor on the one hand and the demand factor on the other. The price of PET bottle chips in China is relatively cheap. PET bottle chips are used as a substitute for other chemical products in various industries as far as possible.


Q9: what is the impact of ethylene glycol capacity expansion, processing profit loss and enterprise adjustment on the later supply of ethylene glycol?

Ji Feng: the capacity of ethylene glycol has increased significantly. In three years, MEG has been transformed an imported product into a product produced and sold on its own. The capacity of polyester and MEG does not match. The adjustment direction of polyester lies in the second great balance of ethylene, changing a new track, new materials and new energy. At present, the pricing of the Chinese market is the lowest in the import market, and the foreign freight is high, which hedges the enthusiasm of foreign production.


Q10: will there be any change in the empty distribution of ethylene glycol in the futures market this year?

Ji Feng: PTA and MEG produce crowding-out effect. On the one hand, the strong side will be squeezed out. This year, inventory has fallen from a high level. The cycle of contraction at the import end. We will see whether reduction can be effectively combined with downstream demand.

Finally, Mr. Lai made professional comments on the recent market and the demand in the second half of the year from the point of view of the third-party information platform.

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