Petrotahlil - India, once the world’s fastest-growing economy, is now facing a decline in some petrochemical and oil demand, as the coronavirus pandemic rages through the country.
With contact tracing a huge problem in the south Asian country, the coronavirus has seen India eclipsing Brazil as its infections and death tolls continue to rise.
According to a Reuters tally, India’s coronavirus infections have topped 4m, or about 16% of the world’s total.
Government data showed India’s gross domestic product (GDP) growth for the first quarter 2020-21 falling by 23.9%, the lowest in 24 years.
India’s nationwide lockdown was imposed on 24 March and continued till end-May.
Restrictions were gradually lifted from June but were re-imposed by certain states to check the surge in cases, rendering millions of workers jobless.
In the Indian acetic acid market, buying momentum has slowed and the arrival of imported cargoes has prompted the reduction of prices amid weak sentiment among some buyers.
The situation was similar in the local acrylonitrile butadiene rubber (NBR) sector, where rising coronavirus infections and lockdowns re-imposed in heavily infected localities have seen buying sentiment softening and resistance mounting to any further price hikes.
With India battered by the economic fallout from intermittent lockdowns, disruption in supply, and dented consumer confidence, there were concerns whether demand would be sustainable into the fourth quarter.
In the ethanolamines market, demand in India remained at best lacklustre as downstream consumption, especially in the construction industry, fell amid the coronavirus pandemic.
Though pockets of demand have picked up recently, market participants wondered how long this would be sustained.
Meanwhile, the spot import linear alkylbenzene (LAB) market was largely muted in India.
India announced September offers slightly lower month on month this week, amid the ongoing monsoon season and weak demand.
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Source : ICIS