Polypropylene (PP) growth rate was 6%/yr until
2000; future growth is expected to slow only slightly.
PP's diversity in end uses has helped sustain its growth
through 2001-a very slow industrial spending year-and estimates
indicate growth for the next two years will be approximately
4%/yr, according to research from Industrial Information
Resources. Capacity increases over the past two years such as
new unit additions by both ExxonMobil and Dow have brought
nearly 1.2 billion lb/yr of new capacity to the market. This
has translated into reduced operating rates for some producers
as capacity slowly crept past demand. Additional capacity is
planned to come online in the second quarter 2002, when
Phillips Petroleum begins operation of its new 775-million
lb/yr unit at its Bayway refinery in Linden, New Jersey.