The Asia Pacific region accounted for over 43% of the global polyethylene capacity in 2008, and is expected to account for nearly 50% of the planned capacity additions until 2015 as per a report by companiesandmarkets.com. The Asia Pacific region will have the maximum capacity additions of more than 12 mln tons during the period 2008-2015. In this region, China and India will account for more than 8 mln tons of future capacity additions. Most of the Chinese capacities have come in the last decade and are dominated by state owned Chinese energy companies. Unipol is the dominant technology used to manufacture polyethylene, followed by Innovene technology. Naptha is the dominant key feedstock for manufacturing polyethylene and gas phase process is the dominant process used to manufacture polyethylene, globally.
Global polyethylene capacity in 2008 totaled 93.87 mln tons and Asia Pacific, North America and Europe are the major regions that accounted for over 76% of global polyethylene plant capacity in 2008. This capacity is expected to increase from 93.87 mln tons in 2008 to 127.89 mln tons in 2015, at a CAGR of 4.5%. HDPE grade accounted for 46% of the global polyethylene capacity in 2008 and will see more than 44% of the polyethylene capacity additions until 2015. Major companies operating in the global polyethylene sector include The Dow Chemical Company, Exxon Mobil Corporation, LyondellBasell Industries, Saudi Basic Industries Corporation and China Petroleum & Chemical Corporation. These companies accounted for 33.2% of the global polyethylene plant capacity in 2008.