Petro­chem­i­cals driv­ing surge in oil de­mand

Chemical Industry Digest - - News & Views -

Petro­chem­i­cals are rapidly be­com­ing the largest driver of global oil con­sump­tion, ac­cord­ing to a re­port by In­ter­na­tional En­ergy Agency (IEA). The IEA es­ti­mates there will be an in­cre­men­tal de­mand growth of 9.6 mil­lion bar­rels a day be­tween 2017 to 2030. As on date, the to­tal oil de­mand is 99 mil­lion bar­rels per day (bpd).

Of the 9.6 mil­lion bpd, 3.2 mil­lion of de­mand growth will come from petro­chem­i­cals. Road freight will con­trib­ute to 2.5 mil­lion bpd and avi­a­tion will drive 1.7 m bpd of de­mand growth. They are set to ac­count for more than a third of the growth in oil de­mand to 2030, and nearly half to 2050, ahead of trucks, avi­a­tion and ship­ping. At the same time, cur­rently dom­i­nant sources of oil de­mand, es­pe­cially pas­sen­ger ve­hi­cles, di­min­ish in im­por­tance thanks to a com­bi­na­tion of bet­ter fuel econ­omy, ris­ing pub­lic trans­port, al­ter­na­tive fuels, and elec­tri­fi­ca­tion.

Ac­cord­ing to the IEA, the largest near-term ca­pac­ity ad­di­tions will come from coun­tries in­clud­ing the Peo­ple’s Re­pub­lic of China and the United States of Amer­ica, while the longer-term growth is led by Asia and the Mid­dle East.

China’s coal-based methanol-to-olefins ca­pac­ity is ex­pected to dou­ble be­tween 2017 and 2025, pro­vid­ing the ma­te­rial in­puts for its large do­mes­tic man­u­fac­tur­ing base. In the longer run, Asia and the Mid­dle East both in­crease their market share of high-value chem­i­cal pro­duc­tion by 10 per­cent­age points, while the share com­ing from Europe and the United States de­creases.

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