Methanol capacity growing too rapidly; supply glut looms

10/12/1998
With about 6 million metric tons/year of methanol capacity expected to come on stream during 1998-2001, the world is headed for a serious supply glut, says James R. Crocco, executive vice-president of methanol studies for Chemical Market Associates Inc. (CMAI), Houston. Demand growth for the period will be only half that amount, resulting in a global methanol capacity surplus equivalent to about 3.5 world-scale methanol plants, says Crocco. This will cause plant operating rates to move even lower than those experienced in the mid-1980s. "This comes at a time when the current crisis in Asia results in reduced methanol demand for that world region, MTBE (methyl tertiar...
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