China’s PVC Flooring Products Have a Bright Outlook
Click:10    DateTime:Dec.26,2022

By Shi Hongxing, Sinopec Qilu Petrochemical Co., Ltd.

Capacity grows quickly

In recent years, China's polyvinyl chloride (PVC) floor has seen a rapid growth in production capacity, output, and exports (See Figure 1), especially the latter two, of which the exports surged by 26% in 2021 and swelled to 2 769 200 tons in the first half of 2022 with a year-on-year increase of 4.45%. It is fair to say that PVC floor has become the best performer of PVC downstream industry. 1 ton of PVC floor will consume 0.34 to 0.36 tons of PVC raw material, whose back-up for healthy development of PVC industry is more significant.


Figure 1 The Growth of China’s flooring products’ capacity and output

Exports continue to grow

China’s PVC floor is mostly used for public interior finishes, with first try-out in areas of schools, hospitals, bus stop, etc. With the popularity of consumption upgrading and the second remodeling, PVC floor market will have a bright outlook.

At present, the annual exports of China’s PVC floor, basically outward-oriented, account for more than 60% of overall industry output. In 2020, the cumulative exports of China’s PVC floor were 4 925 000 tons, 22.1% up from 4 033 000 tons in 2019, before the outbreak of the pandemic (See Figure 2). In 2021, the exports kept growing significantly, reaching 5 834 000 tons (accounting for 65% of domestic output), increasing by 909 000 tons, 18.4% up from the last year. The exports of PVC floor basically were not affected by the pandemic but showed a strong foreign market demand.


Figure 2 Imports and exports of China’s PVC floor

Export analysis

China’s PVC flooring products are mainly exported to North America, Europe and Southeast Asia. In 2021, the exports of China’s PVC floor in the US and Canada occupied 59.46% totally, of which the imports of the US market accounted for 52.36%. Besides, the European region, the second largest export destination of China’s PVC floor, put focus on Germany, Netherlands, Belgium, Great Britain, France, Russia, and Poland. And followed by the third largest ones of Southeast Asia and RCEP region, the emphasis is mostly laid on Australia, the Philippines, Thailand, and Vietnam, etc. The exports of China’s PVC floor in 2021 is shown in Figure 3.


Figure 3 The exports of China’s PVC floor in 2021

Exports boost PVC consumption 

With China’s PVC exports surging in 2021, PVC derivative products, particularly PVC flooring products, also experienced significant export growth. The annual exports reached 5 833 800 tons, requiring PVC raw material of 2 040 000 tons based on 35% of PVC added. According to the information above, in 2021, China totally exported 3 794 300 tons of PVC products including 1 754 300 tons of PVC raw material (See Figure 4).  


Figure 4 The exports of China’s PVC flooring products

In 2022, from January to June, the cumulative exports of China’s PVC flooring products were 2 769 200 tons, increasing by 4.45% over the last year, which is equal to fundamental powders of 970 000 tons. And the PVC cumulative imports were 12 500 tons, 6.51% higher than a year before. In the first half of 2022, domestic PVC flooring products were still mainly exported to North America and European market (See Figure 5). It is evident that the dominant PVC import consumption is in developed countries and regions of North America and Europe. The above two regions occupied 75.25% of China’s total PVC products export.


Figure 5 The exports of China’s PVC flooring products in the first half of 2022

PVC industry is promising

In recent years, developed countries and regions such as the US and the European Union all have significantly cut down the usage of wooden-made decoration material and textile material. Instead, they have increased the demand for PVC flooring products. Economically, some developing countries and regions are on the rise, motivating real estate property and infrastructure construction, which will be sure to promote substantial exports of China’s PVC products.

The trend of reducing wooden products and returning to use plastics in Europe and America is getting acknowledged domestically. As the biggest infrastructure producer, the greater use of PVC products in decoration and fit-up will boost the development of global PVC industry.