PVC pipe users received the most unwanted new year gift when PVC manufacturers hiked the prices on January 1st,second price hike in less than fortnight. What is surprising is the timing of the price hike – crude oil price is falling and PVC prices generally move in tandem with crude oil price.
PVC prices, after falling by 4% on 1stOctober, held firm (despite 30% fall in crude oil prices) until the end of November while consumers were expecting a further price cut. However, after a gap of two months, PVC prices fell by 2.5% on 1stDecember 2018. While the market was expecting further fall in PVC prices, they were in for a shock as the price was increased by 2% and 1.3% on 20thDecember and 1stJanuary, respectively.
On the other hand, prices of other polymers – HDPE/LDPE/Polypropylene/Polyethylene – witnessed significant fall in last few months. While HDPE and LDPE prices have fallen by 18% and 9% respectively, that of Polypropylene and Polyethylene have fallen by 11.5% and 7.5%, respectively.
India’s Plastics industry with a market size of Rs 1.8 trillion is one of the biggest in the world. Industry volumes are estimated at 16MMTPA (in FY17), which is expected to touch 22 MMTPA by 2020. However, per capita consumption of plastic in India is one of the lowest in the world 11kg against 100kg in developed markets. This throws a light on the future potential of the market.
Supreme Industries, Astral Poly Technik, Ashirvad, Prince Pipes, Finolex and Jain Irrigation are the leading pipe manufacturers in the country.