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Ethylene Market Trends

ID: MRFR//0426-CR | 128 Pages | Author: Anshula Mandaokar| March 2024

Global Ethylene Market Overview

Ethylene Market Size was valued at USD 196.2 billion in 2023. The Ethylene industry is projected to grow from USD 198.2 billion in 2024 to USD 287 billion by 2032, exhibiting a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 5.30% during the forecast period (2024 - 2032). The Ethylene Market has experienced significant growth over the past decade. Factors driving this growth include the increasing demand for plastics, packaging materials, and automotive products, as well as the expanding construction and infrastructure sectors. The market is expected to continue its upward trajectory due to rising population, urbanization, and industrialization trends. Ethylene has numerous applications across various industries. The largest end-use sector for ethylene is the packaging industry, followed by construction, automotive, and textiles. In the packaging industry, ethylene is utilized in the production of films, bottles, and containers. In construction, it is used for manufacturing pipes, fittings, and insulation materials. The automotive industry uses ethylene as a raw material for producing parts such as dashboards, door panels, and bumpers, while the textiles industry uses it for manufacturing synthetic fibers.

Ethylene Market Ovevrview

Source: Secondary Research, Primary Research, MRFR Database and Analyst Review

Ethylene Market Trends

  • Widespread use of polyethylene in the packaging industry

Numerous important factors are driving the substantial growth of the Ethylene Market, and one of the main drivers of this growth is the extensive usage of polyethylene in the packaging industry. This motivating factor significantly affects the market's growth and influences supply, demand, and innovation in the ethylene industry. Ethylene is the source of the polymer polyethylene, which finds extensive application in the packaging sector. Plastic bags, bottles, containers, and films are just a few of the varied packaging solutions that may be produced because of polyethylene's easy formability. Because of its adaptability, it can be used to package a variety of things, such as consumer goods, food, beverages, and medications. It is well known that polyethylene is strong and long-lasting. It lowers the possibility of damage or contamination by protecting packaged items during storage and transit. This robustness is essential to maintaining the integrity of the things all the way through the supply chain. Because polyethylene is a lightweight material, it minimizes the carbon footprint associated with transportation, which not only lowers shipping costs but also supports environmental goals. Exceptional barrier qualities against oxygen, moisture, and other environmental elements that can compromise product quality and shelf life can be obtained with various types of polyethylene. The packaging industry's dependence on polyethylene materials directly increases the need for ethylene, the precursor to polyethylene. The special qualities of polyethylene and the packaging industry's never-ending quest for creative solutions work together to produce a mutually beneficial relationship that drives demand for products made of ethylene.

Increasing demand for PVC in construction and pipe applications

The worldwide ethylene market is seeing strong growth due to a number of relevant factors, one of which is the growing demand for PVC (polyvinyl chloride) in pipe and building applications. This need has a significant effect on the ethylene market, affecting developments in the industry as well as the dynamics of supply and demand. Vinyl chloride, a synthetic polymer created from ethylene, is used to make PVC, a versatile material. It is well known for having extraordinary qualities that make it ideal for use in pipes and construction. PVC is a popular material for pipes used in a variety of building projects, such as drainage, sewage, and water supply systems. It is highly durable and resistant to corrosion. Vinyl chloride, the raw ingredient used to make PVC, is mostly ethylene. PVC demand growth immediately contributes to higher ethylene consumption, which in turn drives up ethylene production and the market as a whole. The infrastructure and building industries primarily use PVC. Due to infrastructure development initiatives and urbanization, these industries are growing internationally, and this is driving up demand for ethylene.In December 2023, INEOS purchased the LyondellBasell ethylene oxide and derivatives business and production facility at Bayport, Texas, for USD 700 Million. This deal includes the 420kt Ethylene Oxide plant, the 375kt Ethylene Glycols plant and the 165kt Glycol Ethers plant, together with all associated third-party businesses on the site.

Growing demand for bio-based ethylene

The need for bio-based ethylene is one of the major elements driving the Ethylene Market's expansion, and it is one of several compelling factors driving the market's dynamic growth. The ethylene market is significantly impacted by the growing interest in bio-based ethylene, which also has an impact on supply chains, sustainability programs, and industry innovation. Concerns about climate change and increased environmental awareness have led businesses and consumers to look for more environmentally friendly options. Since bio-based ethylene production has a lower carbon footprint than standard ethylene production, it is in line with these concerns. Policies and incentives have been created by governments and regulatory agencies in different regions to promote the use of sustainable and renewable materials in industry. The laws above augment the market need for bio-based ethylene as enterprises endeavor to conform to sustainable norms. The trend of ethical consumerism is growing as more and more customers choose goods manufactured using environmentally friendly and sustainable components. Industries are being forced to include bio-based ethylene in their production processes due to a shift in consumer preferences. A lot of businesses are establishing challenging sustainability goals, such as cutting back on their environmental effect and carbon emissions. The use of bio-based ethylene improves these businesses' reputations while assisting them in meeting their sustainability objectives.Honeywell announced new technological developments in March 2022 that would enhance the efficiency of naphtha crackers used to produce ethylene. Lummus Technology partnered with Braskem in April 2022 on a global license agreement for green ethylene technology that enables bioethanol-based chemicals and plastics production, supporting industry commitment to a carbon-neutral circular economy.Ethylene Market Segment Insights

Ethylene by Feedstock Insights

The Ethylene Market segmentation, based on Feedstock has been segmented as Naphtha, Ethane, Propane, Butane, Others. Among these, the Ethane segment is projected to dominate the Ethylene Market revenue through the projected period. The utilization of ethane as the primary feedstock for ethylene production has witnessed substantial growth, particularly in regions with abundant natural gas reserves, such as the United States. Ethane is now more readily available and more cost-competitive than other feedstocks like naphtha as a result of the shale gas revolution.

Ethylene by Application Insights

Based on Application, the Ethylene Market is segmented as Polyethylene, Ethylene Oxide, Ethylbenzene, Ethylene Dichloride, Vinyl Acetate, Others. The Polyethylene segment is further segmented as HDPE, LDPE, LLDPE. Out of which the Polyethylene segment dominated base year market and is also projected to dominate the Ethylene Market revenue through the projected period. Polyethylene stands as one of the most widely utilized plastics on a global scale. It represents a polymer constructed from ethylene monomers that undergo chemical bonding through the process of polymerization. The production of polyethylene occurs on a massive scale worldwide, with its manufacturing intricately tied to the availability of ethylene, which serves as the primary raw material in the production of polyethylene.

Ethylene by End Use Industry Insights

The Ethylene Market segmentation, based on End Use Industry has been segmented as Packaging, Automotive, Building & Construction, Agrochemical, Textile, Chemicals, Rubber & Plastics, Soaps & Detergents, Others. Among these, the Packaging segment is projected to dominate the Ethylene Market revenue through the projected period. Polyethylene, a polymer originating from ethylene, emerges as one of the most prevalent materials employed in packaging. Polyethylene films and bags manifest in diverse forms, including low-density polyethylene (LDPE), linear low-density polyethylene (LLDPE), and high-density polyethylene (HDPE). These versatile materials find extensive use in packaging for food, beverages, consumer goods, and industrial products.

Ethylene Regional Insights

Based on Region, the Ethylene market is segmented into North America, Europe, Asia-Pacific, Middle East & Africa, and Latin America. The Asia-Pacific Ethylene market held the maximum market share and is also expected to account for a significant revenue share during the forecast period. The Asia Pacific ethylene market stands as a powerhouse within the global petrochemical landscape. Boasting rapid industrialization, burgeoning populations, and robust economic growth, the region commands a substantial share of the world's ethylene production. Abundant access to diverse feedstocks, including naphtha, ethane, and other hydrocarbon resources, fuels the region's thriving ethylene industry. The proliferation of mega-scale petrochemical complexes, particularly in countries like China, South Korea, and Singapore, underscores the region's commitment to scaling up ethylene production capacity.

Ethylene Key Market Players & Competitive Insights

Key market players are emphasizing significantly on R&D for increasing their product offerings, which will further help the Ethylene Market to grow considerably. Market players are adopting several business development strategies such as acquisitions, mergers, collaborations, and partnerships to enhance their market presence and acquire a larger customer base. To survive in the competitive market, industry players must provide cost effective products.

The Ethylene market is very competitive with market players trying to develop unique and innovative products and solutions, which could render the competitors’ offerings obsolete. The competitive environment is likely to grow further owing to rising technological advancements. Some of the key players operating in the Ethylene Market are SABIC, Dow, Exxon Mobil Corporation, Shell Global, China Petrochemical Corporation, Chevron Phillips Chemical Company LLC, TotalEnergies, LyondellBasell Industries Holdings B.V, Repsol, BASF SE, Westlake Corporation, Sasol, Mitsubishi Chemical Corporation, NOVA Chemicals Corporate (Canada). To increase their global reach and client base, key firms are concentrating on acquisitions and product innovation.

SABIC: Saudi Basic Industries Corporation, or SABIC for short, is a leading global manufacturer of plastics and diverse chemicals. Since its founding in 1976, SABIC has expanded to rank among the biggest and most significant businesses in the Middle East. An extensive overview of SABIC is given in this corporate profile, which also includes information on the company's history, mission, major business sectors, global presence, sustainability initiatives, and dedication to innovation and excellence. As the globe works to contain the outbreak, the ethylene market will likely see ongoing attempts to strengthen supply chain resilience and prepare for any future crises. The goal of SABIC is quite clear and simple: to improve people's quality of life by offering creative, sustainable chemical and plastic solutions. The company is to be a world leader in chemicals by continuously providing value to its clients, investors, and the general public. This vision fuels SABIC's dedication to quality, innovation, and ethical business conduct. Ethylene, propylene, and a range of intermediate chemicals utilized in the automotive, building, and healthcare industries are just a few of the chemical compounds produced by SABIC. With activities and facilities spread over more than 50 countries, SABIC has a wide worldwide presence. The Americas, Europe, Asia, and the Middle East are the regions where the company is most prevalent. With such a wide reach, SABIC is able to offer customers innovative solutions that are customized to meet their unique demands on a global basis.


Dow: Leading the way in materials science worldwide, Dow offers a vast array of cutting-edge goods and services that affect nearly every facet of contemporary living. With more than a century of experience, Dow has made a name for itself as a leader in the chemical business, dedicated to advancing development and sustainability. With a focus on the company's history, mission, major business sectors, global reach, sustainability initiatives, and commitment to innovation, this profile provides a comprehensive look at Dow Inc. Dow's origins can be traced to Midland, Michigan, USA, where Herbert H. Dow established the business in 1897. At first, the company concentrated on producing bromine, a valuable chemical that is utilized in many different industries. With time, Dow broadened its offerings and competencies, becoming a leader in the creation of materials, polymers, and synthetic chemicals that have transformed numerous industries. The goal of Dow is to fervently develop innovations for stakeholders in the nexus of physics, biology, and chemistry. The company sees a sustainable future in which people and the environment benefit from its goods and solutions. Dow bases its decisions and activities on its dedication to sustainability, innovation, and teamwork. Dow is a multinational corporation that operates in over 175 countries. The organization has an extensive global network of offices, R&D centers, and production sites. Because of its wide global reach, Dow is able to provide consumers with services in a variety of areas and adapt to changing needs both locally and globally.Exon Mobil Corporation formed a joint venture, Gulf Coast Growth Ventures, with SABIC in June 2019, and they announced plans to build a chemical complex and an ethane steam cracker in Texas. The facility is designed to produce feedstocks for a range of products, such as building materials, packaging and automotive coolants. During its life, the facility will include two polyethylene units and a mono-ethylene glycol unit.

Key Companies in the Ethylene Market includes

  • SABIC (Saudi Arabia)

  • Dow (US)

  • Exxon Mobil Corporation (US)

  • Shell Global (UK)

  • China Petrochemical Corporation (China)

  • Chevron Phillips Chemical Company LLC (US)

  • TotalEnergies (France)

  • LyondellBasell Industries Holdings B.V (Netherlands)

  • Repsol (Spain)

  • BASF SE (Germany)

  • Westlake Corporation (US)

  • Sasol (South Africa)

  • Mitsubishi Chemical Corporation (Japan)

  • NOVA Chemicals Corporate (Canada)

Ethylene Industry Developments

March 2022: Dow and New Energy Blue have signed a long-term supply contract for North America. New Energy Blue would use renewable agricultural leftovers to produce bio-based ethylene. In order to lower carbon emissions from the production of plastic, Dow plans to buy this bio-based ethylene and use it in recyclable applications such as packaging, footwear, and transportation.

April 2022: The start of construction on the Verbund site extension by BASF and SINOPEC. BASF-YPC Co., Ltd. (BASF-YPC) is a 50/50 joint venture between the two corporations located in Nanjing. The expansion aims to meet the increasing demand from different industries in the Chinese market by adding a new tert-butyl acrylate plant and expanding the capabilities of other downstream chemical factories.

Ethylene Market Segmentation

Ethylene Feedstock Outlook

  • Naphtha

  • Ethane

  • Propane

  • Butane

  • Others

Ethylene Application Outlook

  • Polyethylene

    • HDPE

    • LDPE

    • LLDPE

  • Ethylene Oxide

  • Ethylbenzene

  • Ethylene Dichloride

  • Vinyl Acetate

  • Others

Ethylene End Use Industry Outlook

  • Packaging

  • Automotive

  • Building & Construction

  • Agrochemical

  • Textile

  • Chemicals

  • Rubber & Plastics

  • Soaps & Detergents

  • Others

Ethylene Regional Outlook

  • North America

    • US

    • Canada

  • Europe

    • Germany

    • UK

    • France

    • Russia

    • Italy

    • Spain

    • Rest of Europe

  • Asia-Pacific

    • China

    • Japan

    • India

    • Australia & New Zealand

    • Rest of Asia Pacific

  • Latin America

    • Brazil

    • Mexico

    • Argentina

    • Rest of Latin America

  • Middle East & Africa

    • Saudi Arabia

    • UAE

    • South Africa

    • Rest of Middle East & Africa

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