By Gary Thomas
GBI Research, a provider of business intelligence reports, has released a new report titled, “Acrylonitrile Global Market to 2020– Household appliances and Electronics Sector to Drive Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene (ABS) Growth, Polymeric Applications Propel Polyacrylonitrile Demand from Asia-Pacific.”
According to the report, the worldwide demand for acrylonitrile is steadily rising in the last 10 years and the Asia-Pacific region dominated the market in 2011 with a 73% share. Global acrylonitrile demand reached 4,427,469 t in 2000 and increased to 4,696,141 t in 2011. The demand is anticipated to increase at a CAGR of 4.1% and reach 6,757,081 t in the year 2020.
Currently, thermoplatics demand from China is driving the demand for acrylonitrile in the Asia-Pacific market. However, the country still imports a significant amount of acrylonitrile to produce acrylonitrile downstream supplies, such as nitrile elastomer, polyacrylonitrile and ABS. Hence, China needs to focus more on capacity additions and technological advancements to reduce dependence on supply imports.
The major feedstock used to produce acrylonitrile is propylene. However, the dynamics of the industry has changed in the last few years due to higher use of shale gas in certain regions. At present, the feedstock utilized in cracking delivers a higher ethylene product mixture that leads to decreased propylene supply. Hence, producers are developing an individual technology to create propylene, which may be similar or even cheaper than the traditionally produced propylene. Still, no breakthrough has been made and till the innovative technologies are completely implemented, a deficiency of feedstock for acrylonitrile production is expected in the future.