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Propylene output to more than double by 2017

Hydrocarbon Engineering,

The US is expected to become a net exporter of propylene by 2017, according to a new study released by global energy news and price reporting organisation Argus.

Rising production of propane from US shale formations, and shifts to heavier feedstocks in the Middle East and lighter feeds in Europe are affecting propylene supply more than any other product.

US and Chinese producers in particular are investing heavily in propane dehydrogenation (PDH) technology, which converts propane into propylene to fill the supply gap caused by slower growth in ethylene cracker capacity and lighter cracker feedstocks output.

Argus expects global propylene demand to lag behind capacity growth, creating a global surplus, assuring all planned capacity is built. With propylene as the base for many everyday products such as plastics, automotive parts and synthetic fibres for clothing, this signals an important trend for many businesses.

Adrian Binks, Argus Media chairman and chief executive, commented: “The propylene industry has gone from stagnation five years ago to continuous expansion for the foreseeable future. The 2014 Argus DeWitt Propylene Annual will be a valuable resource for those affected by the changing dynamics of the propylene markets”.

Adapted from a press release by Emma McAleavey.

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