Overview

The global methanol industry has suffered in recent years. First COVID-19, then the Russia-Ukraine conflict, followed by global inflation, stagnation and downward revised GDP forecasts. It is hoped 2022/2023 will be the performance valley for the sector, looking toward an improved—but still slowed—outlook. The huge China methanol appetite has slowed. The MTO sector sees minimal growth ahead. The rest of the world will have to generate increased demand, but with much of this sector tied to GDP performance, the outlook here too is reserved. New capacity continues to define the landscape, with several new units expected in the coming months.

Pricing is spiking in Q4’23 due to a myriad of methanol production outages around the world. Production will return and prices weaken some. However, the outlook is for the olefins and olefin derivative sectors to finally end their respective down cycles. Olefin/derivative prices are expected to improve, driving higher MTO methanol affordability values. The rest of the methanol industry is expected to follow China’s MTO methanol price strength.

Argus’ experts will help you determine what trends to track and how to stay competitive in today’s ever-changing global markets.

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