Belgium's Expanded Polystyrene Prices Show Stability Amidst Demand-Supply Interplay
Belgium's Expanded Polystyrene Prices Show Stability Amidst Demand-Supply Interplay

Belgium's Expanded Polystyrene Prices Show Stability Amidst Demand-Supply Interplay

  • 13-Jun-2024 4:05 PM
  • Journalist: Emilia Jackson

Antwerp (Belgium): In the first week of June 2024, the Expanded Polystyrene market in Belgium remained stable due to a prolonged balance between demand and supply, mirroring the trend of past few weeks. Prices stayed constant at USD 2,200 per metric ton on an FD - Antwerp basis, experiencing only minor fluctuations at the beginning of the period.

The month of April started off with a less than 1% price decrease in the first week, resulting in the aforementioned price. This initial change was influenced by moderate demand across various industries, affecting pricing dynamics. With the decrease in natural gas and polystyrene prices—the primary material for Expanded Polystyrene—production costs decreased, contributing to the decline in market prices.

However, from the second week onwards, the market witnessed a rise in demand for Expanded Polystyrene in Belgium, particularly from the environmental and healthcare sectors. The surge in demand was driven by the packaging and insulation sectors, as well as a noticeable increase in orders from medical device companies. Despite this heightened demand, Belgium was able to maintain a steady supply through local production supported by major chemical manufacturers and imports from key global players to meet the growing demand. Consistent industrial activities, minimal supply disruptions, efficient supply chain management, and widespread distribution of Expanded Polystyrene across Belgium all played a role in keeping the price stable for the rest of April.

This consistency in price remained throughout May, with the Expanded Polystyrene market maintaining a balance between supply and demand, resulting in no price fluctuations and trading at the same price as in April. May's manufacturing PMI data showed near stabilization in production, with a minor contraction in factory output. This, coupled with softened declines in new orders, exports, and purchasing activity, contributed to the steady pricing observed in the Expanded Polystyrene market. With business confidence in future production prospects reaching its peak since early 2022, market stability was further solidified.

Once again, price stability persisted through early June, as Expanded Polystyrene continued to be traded at USD 2,200 per metric ton. Market observers at ChemAnalyst stated that the stable cost of polystyrene, the base material for Expanded Polystyrene production, played a crucial role in maintaining steady production costs. With the market finding its equilibrium, demand from sectors like packaging, automotive, and electronics continued to drive the market, supporting stable prices.

In conclusion, Belgium's Expanded Polystyrene market demonstrated a strong relationship between demand and supply from April through the first week of June. Despite initial fluctuations, the market stabilized due to consistent industrial activities, effective supply chain management, and stable upstream costs, presenting a resilient and well-rounded market environment.

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