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Growth in Asia-Pacific and North American solar panel sectors to drive demand for EVA

Growth in Asia-Pacific and North American solar panel sectors to drive demand for EVA

29-Jan-13

Despite the threat of linear low-density polyethylene (LLDPE) resin substitution, global ethylene-vinyl acetate (EVA) copolymers consumption continues to grow, with new capacity expansions expected. Although easier-processing LLDPE is being introduced, EVAs are still the easiest polymers to process for numerous applications. Its high melt strength makes it the material of choice for wide films, foam applications and extrusion coating. Technology improvements enable increased plant capacities and higher operating efficiencies. While most of the newly installed LDPE/EVA capacities are based on tubular reactors, autoclave reactors are still relevant, especially for producing specialty-grade EVAs. Asia's impressive manufacturing industry will be largely responsible for a predicted worldwide Ethylene Vinyl Acetate (EVA) demand increase - from 2,286,193 tons in 2011 to 2,966,078 tons in 2017, climbing at a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 4.4%. The huge economic progress of countries across the continent is the primary driver for the continued growth of the global Ethylene Vinyl Acetate (EVA) market, as per GBI Research. According to this research, Asia was accountable for 49% of the global EVA demand in 2011, with the market driven primarily by China (with a 62% share of the continent's total), followed by Japan (16%) and South Korea (8%).

Although extensively used in the foams and films manufacturing industry, EVA can also be used in the construction of solar voltaic panels as an encapsulating material. EVA is used to encapsulate solar cells in the manufacture of solar panels. It prevents moisture from entering the panels and shorting out the solar cells. It also minimizes glass shattering and provides a buffer to prevent solar cells from cracking. The growing solar power industry is therefore predicted to play an important role in the future production of the co-polymer, particularly in China - a major producer of solar power equipment. The number one global use for EVA in 2011 was for the production of foams and shoes, making up 46% of the market. Films, used in packaging, agriculture and other areas, accounted for 30%, while photovoltaic panel production held a 9% portion. However, in Asia, due in no small part to huge manufacturing bases in China and India, the foam and shoe manufacturing industries were responsible for 62% of demand, with the production of adhesives in second place with 12%.

As per Eurasianchemicalmarket, although the CIS states accounted for only 0.3% (7,600 tpa) of the world’s EVA output, the consumption in the post Soviet states is growing by leaps and bounds. The only producer of ethylene vinyl acetate with a high content of ethylene chains (EVA) in the post-Soviet countries is Neftehimsevilen JSC (Kazan, Republic of Tatarstan). EVA manufactured by this company under the trade mark Sevilen won recognition in the CIS countries as well as worldwide. The CIS market of high acetate content (VAE) co-polymers has been showing an impressive growth in recent years. In particular, the Russian imports of VAE dispersions for 2007 displayed a 78.2% YOY increase to 7,100 tons.

 
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