PU China/UTECH Asia 2014 took place in Shanghai in early September. Simon Robinson and Jane Ho report on some of the key exhibitors and trends revealed at the event.
China has been a driver of polyurethane consumption over the past decade and there has been considerable growth in consumption during that time. However, the different market segments have unique drivers.
Insulated boards and panels for construction is a segment in which growth is almost taken for granted at the moment within North America and Europe.
In China, things are different as Kenny Pan, vp Asia Pacific polyurethanes at Huntsman explained: “PU is the best material for insulation but other materials may have better fire properties at the expense of insulation,” said Pan.
This is echoed by Peter Huo, vp sales & marketing at Wanhua: “There are a lot of issues. The fire issue in high-rise buildings certainly will not help,” said Huo.
China-watchers suggest that because China is a one-party state, and no one in the ruling communist party wants to make a mistake, there is a structural political issue around insulation.
A fit of the jitters
They suggest the problem in China is the implementation of a law. One source suggested that “even if…