December 5, 2006

CMAI Announces Completion of Olefins World Analyses; World Light Olefins Analysis and World Butadiene Analysis

HOUSTON, Dec. 5 /PRNewswire/ -- Chemical Market Associates, Inc. (CMAI) recently completed the 2007 World Light Olefins Analysis and the 2007 World Butadiene Analysis. These are annual studies that cover the global light olefins, ethylene & propylene, and global butadiene and derivatives industries, respectively. These annual analyses provides information on supply, demand, production, capacity and pricing history and forecasts, as well as access to CMAI online capacity and supply/demand databases. The analyses comprise eleven years of study: five years of history, the current year, and five years of forecast. Sold separately these analyses offer answers to your most pertinent questions regarding the global olefins markets.

   2007 WORLD LIGHT OLEFINS ANALYSIS   Ethylene & Propylene Demand:  

The global ethylene market grew at an estimated 5 percent due to strong economic growth throughout the world. Total ethylene consumption for 2006 is forecast to have reached more than 110 million metric tons. CMAI experts predict that over the next five years, world ethylene demand growth will average just over 4 percent. Global propylene demand during 2006 saw a growth rate estimated at 5.5 percent bringing total propylene consumptions up to about 69 million metric tons. The five year outlook shows world propylene demand growth to average slightly less than 5 percent per year, with polypropylene being the dominant driver for growth.

Ethylene Capacity:

Global ethylene capacity utilization declined in 2001 through 2003 due to low demand growth, however operating rates increased in 2004 through 2006 due to a resurgence in ethylene demand at a time of limited capacity. The global utilization rates are predicted to remain high in 2007 and 2008, but a sharp decline in global capacity utilization by the end of the decade is expected according to CMAI consultants.

Propylene Supply:

Given the two primary sources of propylene from a historical perspective, steam crackers and refineries, the future of propylene supply has been somewhat uncertain due to the fact that historic annual growth rates for propylene demand have been consistently higher than ethylene and motor gasoline. By the end of the current decade, CMAI's forecast shows the global propylene market will become dependent upon "on-purpose processes" for meeting incremental propylene demand growth.

   2007 WORLD BUTADIENE ANALYSIS   Butadiene Demand:  

After a significant decrease between 2000 and 2001, world demand for butadiene increased fairly consistently between 2001 and 2006. Over the next five years, demand is expected to grow at a rate just under three percent per year, which is slightly lower than the 3.7 percent per year experienced over the past five.

Butadiene Supply:

Crude C4 from steam crackers, the raw material for over 95 percent of butadiene production, is most influenced by ethylene utilization rates and feedstock choices. CMAI emphasizes that these variables are not significantly influenced by conditions in the butadiene market. Over the next 5 years, crude C4 production is expected to increase, but at a slower rate than ethylene production. However, global crude C4 supply will be sufficient to meet butadiene demand and conditions that would make "on purpose" butadiene production an attractive alternative are not anticipated.

CMAI's 2007 World Light Olefins Analysis and 2007 World Butadiene Analysis are available in book and CD-ROM format and also include technology analysis and trade as well as other pertinent issues relating to these global industries. Online Capacity and Supply/Demand databases create a full spectrum of knowledge pertinent to these markets.

CMAI is a petrochemical consulting firm that services a wide range of companies all over the world. Since 1979, CMAI's goal has been to provide accurate, timely consulting services for the worldwide petrochemical, plastics, fiber and chlor-alkali industries. CMAI maintains offices in Houston, New York, London, Dubai, Dusseldorf, Singapore and Shanghai. Clients to CMAI services include chemical and oil companies, engineering and construction companies, banking and financial institutions, grocers/retailers, plastic converters, government agencies and trading companies.

For more information on CMAI's 2007 World Light Olefins Analysis and/or 2007 World Butadiene Analysis visit CMAI's website at or contact:

                                 Anne Thomasson                                      CMAI                         11757 Katy Freeway, Suite 700                            Houston, TX 77079 U.S.A                      Tel: 281-531-4660 Fax: 281-531-9966                        Email: [email protected]  

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Chemical Market Associates, Inc.

CONTACT: Anne Thomasson of Chemical Market Associates, Inc.,+1-281-531-4660, or fax, +1-281-531-9966, or [email protected]

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