Global Polyester Staple Fiber Price Rises Amidst High Feedstock Costs and Supply Challenges
Global Polyester Staple Fiber Price Rises Amidst High Feedstock Costs and Supply Challenges

Global Polyester Staple Fiber Price Rises Amidst High Feedstock Costs and Supply Challenges

  • 13-Feb-2024 4:52 PM
  • Journalist: Jung Hoon

Polyester Staple Fiber (PSF) price has been increasing in the global market since early 2024. The PSF market is grappling with numerous challenges that drove its price in an upward trajectory including production cost and transportation. These challenges have significant implications for manufacturers, supply chains, and consumers worldwide.

In the US market, PSF price has surged around 10% in just three months followed by the expensive import from the Chinese market. One of the primary challenges confronting the US PSF market is the escalation in production costs. Factors such as increased feedstock costs, rising energy prices, and heightened regulatory requirements have contributed to the uptick in production expenses. The price increment of raw materials Mono Ethylene Glycol (MEG) and Purified Terephthalic Acid (PTA) is a pivot point. In 2024, the global market is struggling with the shortage of MEG owing to the high consumption in winter and curtailed production. This shortage of MEG originated from multiple factors including the plant shutdowns by key market players. The major production units of MEG in Saudi Arabia, Eastern Petrochemical Company (SHARQ), No.1 as well as No.2 in Al-Jubail were down due to the maintenance along with another production unit, i.e. Yanbu national petrochemical company, also reduced its operation capacity. These shutdowns of plant production became the critical reason for price increases and supply-demand dynamics disturbance.

Asian markets like China, a global producer of PSF have been struggling with similar challenges, Chinese PSF market has been experiencing frequent fluctuations this year. Chinese domestic PSF market has continued to rise since the mid-January. As of February's first week, the spot price of PSF was around USD 1084/MT, with an increase of 2% compared to mid-January. Meanwhile, the Purchasing Managers Index (PMI) rose in Asian countries like China, India, and South Korea indicating the improvement in factory and operational activities amidst the global challenges.

The Red Sea crisis has further elaborated the challenges within the industry. The recent blockage of the Suez Canal due to geopolitical tensions in the region disrupted global trade routes, leading to delays in raw material shipments and exacerbating supply chain constraints. The reliance of the PSF industry on efficient maritime transportation underscores the significance of such disruptions, highlighting the need for diversified supply chain strategies and plans to mitigate risks associated with geopolitical instability. As per the data, shipment charges from China to the US have surged up to 190% since December 2023.

Conclusively, the global PSF market has been facing complex challenges characterized by increasing production costs, geopolitical tensions, and volatility in crude oil markets. As per the analysis, the PSF market may maintain this trend in the coming months.

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