Saudi petrochemical exports to Asia up 6.6%
Saudi Arabia’s petrochemical exports to Asia increased 6.6 percent in the first half of 2011 over the same period last year. The rise, revealed in an official report, comes despite allegations of dumping — flooding a market with low-priced products to undercut local producers — from countries such as China, Turkey and Pakistan. It also follows India’s decision in November 2010 to impose anti-dumping duties on polypropylene imports from Saudi Arabia for five years.
Saudi Arabia’s total petrochemical exports rose to 14.98 million tonnes from 14.06 million tonnes during the period, an increase that has been attributed to huge demand from Asian countries as well as the increase in production in the kingdom. There has been an increase of 83 percent in exports of petrochemicals in the last year and a half, rising to 5.23 million tonnes from 2.86 million tonnes, the report showed.
Petrochemicals made up 37 percent of the kingdom’s non-petroleum exports in June, worth 14.1 billion riyals (Dh13.8 billion), according to a recent report by the General Statistics and Information Bureau. Plastic products follow with 28 percent. The report also showed that there has been a huge increase in the prices of petrochemical products at the global level over the past few months, and this was mainly attributed to the increase in crude oil prices.
The European Union has started a probe into the alleged dumping of polypropylene by a subsidiary of the Saudi Basic Industries Corporation (Sabic) following complaints by some EU countries.
Meanwhile, senior officials of Saudi Arabia and India will resume next month their bilateral crisis talks aimed at resolving the outstanding problems after the latter’s imposition of the anti-dumping duty. The countries have already held a series of talks on the matter, say Saudi sources. Speaking to Gulf News, the sources said the ministerial level talks will be held in New Delhi in September. They will be headed by Saudi Minister of Commerce and Industry Abdullah Zainal and Indian Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee. Greater significance was attached to the next round of talks to avoid the imposition of anti-dumping duty affecting bilateral relations.
India’s imports of polypropylene total 25,000 tonnes annually. New Delhi is now imposing an anti-dumping duty of 1.5 percent per tonne of the product.
83% rise in petrochemicals exports in 18 months.
37% of non-petroleum exports are petrochemicals.