Tokyo — Japan produced more polyurethane in 2017 than since 2008, according to Japan's Ministry of International Trade and Industry (MITI).
The country produced 199.4 kT in 2017, narrowly beating the 198.1 kt produced in 2014. That is the last high point since the 2008 global economic crash.
The Japanese industry was 2kT of production of head of the whole of 2016 by the end of November 2017. It produced 17.4 kt in December 2017, itself 16 kT ahead of December 2016.
However the rate of growth over the past three months slowed. Production in October 2017 was 2kt ahead of the same month in October 2016.
Figures from MITI show that in 1995 the Japanese polyurethane industry was producing around 275 kT of all types of polyurethane. This grew to just under 300 kT in 1997 before starting a long slow decline to around 250 kT in 2005. Production fell more sharply between 2006 and 2008 reaching a low of 163 kT in 2009. That was a drop of 58 kT or 26% compared to the previous year.
There is a two-month lag between the reporting month and the availability of statistics from MITI.