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EU ABS TRADE DECLINES SHARPLY IN JANUARY
imports

EU ABS trade declines sharply in January, according to recent data by Eurostat. EU27 experienced notable changes in the trade of acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS) in January 2023.

Exports decreased substantially, while imports showed a mixed trend compared to previous years.

According to the data provided, ABS exports from the EU27 region in January 2023 were 15,431 metric tonnes (MT).

This was a sharp decline of 28.9% compared to the same month in 2022, when exports reached 21,726 MT.

The export numbers in January 2021 were slightly lower than 2022, standing at 19,222 MT.

On the import side, the EU27 region saw 13,226 MT of ABS imports in January 2023.

This is a significant decrease of 47.1% compared to January 2022, when imports reached a high of 25,005 MT.

However, this figure represents a 9.7% decrease compared to January 2021, when imports were 14,644 MT.

EU ABS PRICES DROP IN MARCH AMID POOR DEMAND
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EU ABS price drop in March amid poor demand, according to GC Intelligence assessments. European acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS) prices experienced a decrease in March.

The decrease represents ongoing competitive imports, low demand, and an unexpected dip in the styrene monomer contract price.

The market has been struggling to recover from the loss in demand seen in recent months.

The price forecasts have been adjusted downwards to reflect the weaker market conditions.

Demand has marginally increased since its low point at the end of last year, but growth has been hindered by various factors.

Some of these include flat activity levels in most markets and low consumer confidence.

Despite automotive sector growth, other industries like construction and electronics face negative market conditions.

Concerns about another banking crisis could further suppress demand for ABS plastic.

In the short term, a supply deficit could arise if demand bounces back, but there are currently no signs supporting this view.

The market is expected to face ongoing economic pressures from inflation and energy.

This should continue to impact consumer spending and hinder any recovery during the first half of the year.

EU CAR MARKET GROWS 11.5%

EU car market grows for the seventh consecutive month, according to the latest figures by the European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (ACEA).

The EU passenger car market reported an 11.5% growth in February 2023, with 802,763 units sold.

This growth, however, reflects a rebound against the low base established due to the semiconductor shortage crisis at the beginning of 2022. As such volumes remain relatively low.

Spain and Italy witnessed the largest increases, with 19.2% and 17.4% respectively.

The first two months of the year saw the EU market reaching nearly 1.6 million new cars registered, an 11.4% increase from the previous year.

Battery electric vehicles (BEVs) accounted for 12.1% of the market share in February, with 97,300 new BEV registrations, a 39.7% increase compared to February 2022.

Hybrid electric vehicles (HEVs) saw a 22.3% increase in sales, reaching a 25.5% market share. However, petrol vehicles remained the most popular choice for new car registrations, holding a 36.9% market share.

In contrast, diesel car registrations in the EU continued to decline, dropping by 8.4% and resulting in a 15.0% market share, down 3.2 percentage points from February 2022.

AUTO INDUSTRY URGES BETTER GREEN TRANSITION
auto chargin points

The auo industry urges better green trnasition. As the European Council Summit approaches, the European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association (ACEA) is reiterating its call for accelerated action to protect the EU’s industrial base during the green transition.

ACEA President and Renault Group CEO, Luca de Meo, expressed concern over Europe’s automotive industry losing its technological edge to competitors in China and the US amid eroding EU competitiveness. He urged for accelerated fleet renewal as the most effective way to reduce CO2 and pollutant emissions.

Sigrid de Vries, ACEA Director General, criticized the recent Euro 7 proposal on pollutant emissions, claiming it would add complexity and uncertainty to European vehicle manufacturers’ decisions without delivering substantial environmental benefits. ACEA estimates the proposal could increase new car prices by an average of €2,000, potentially leading to consumers holding onto older, less environmentally friendly vehicles.

De Meo called for a focus on improving air quality in urban areas, adhering to subsidiarity and proportionality principles, to address the issue more effectively.

PA6 PRICES PLUNGE IN MARCH
price decreases

PA6 prices plunge in March, taking a steeper than expected dip due to tough market conditions and weak demand from most segments.

The GC Intelligence price assessments show ongoing price decreases for both PA6 and PA66 in Europe.

The market remains well supplied, especially for PA6, despite reduced production. There is little hope for a recovery in the near term, especially during the first half of the year.

While some recent data shows positive numbers, such as construction, industrial, and consumer confidence, some of these figures can be misleading.

For example, the automotive sector shows ongoing increases in sales from last year, but this is primarily due to overcoming previous challenges, like semiconductor shortages, rather than an indication of robust demand. Overall, demand remains sluggish.

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