Inflationary pressure catapults the Dioctyl Phthalate prices in Asia
- 07-Apr-2022 5:27 PM
- Journalist: Francis Stokes
The global Phthalate market has been on an uptrend since the first week of this year, owing to the steep rise in the prices of upstream crude coupled with improved demand from the downstream market. As per the ChemAnalyst data, a rise of around 1.2% and 0.3% was observed for Dioctyl Phthalate (DOP) during the February-March timeframe across India and South Korea, respectively. This price revision was primarily driven by the rising upstream value coupled with improving demand from the domestic market.
Crude oil prices have been on an uptrend since the first week of January, taking pressure from the escalating tension between Russia and Ukraine, which is pushing up the prices of several commodities, including phthalates in the global market. In India, demand fundamentals for the product from the domestic polymer segment have risen under the influence of improved offtakes from the domestic construction sector, as Dioctyl Phthalate is used as a plasticizer in Polyvinyl Chloride and Polystyrene. As per the EXIM data, India primarily imports Dioctyl Phthalate from China, followed by Korea and Malaysia. Thus, rising freight cost under the influence of inflationary pressure has been affecting the overall pricing dynamics of several products, including Dioctyl Phthalate in Asia.
Meanwhile, in China, the daily rise in COVID cases has started bothering the Asian market, as the country has undergone strict movement restrictions across several cities. Furthermore, traders in the country have also been influenced by restricted trade activities coupled with disturbance in domestic trading due to limited transportation by trucks. However, demand for the product usually remains high in China from domestic as well as international markets. Consequently, traders are highly anxious about future demand and profitability, as trade disruptions amid soaring upstream are pressuring traders’ margins.
As per the ChemAnalyst data, Dioctyl Phthalate prices are expected to remain buoyant under the influence of the rising demand pattern amidst soaring upstream value. However, strategic reserve release by the USA, lockdown in China, and truce agreement in UAE with rebels have induced optimism across the global market, which may lead to a significant fall in the upstream value.