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Published: November 2012
Cyclopentadiene and its dimer, dicyclopentadiene, are obtained as by-products of the steam cracking of hydrocarbons. Production and consumption have been concentrated in the United States, Western Europe and Japan, but the rise of Chinese demand in traditional dicyclopentadiene markets has made China the third-largest regional consumer. Especially in Asia, the growth of the construction, automotive and electronics industries has increased consumption of dicyclopentadiene.
The following pie chart shows consumption of dicyclopentadiene by major region:
Sales in the primary end-use markets for dicyclopentadiene—unsaturated polyester resins, EPDM elastomers and hydrocarbon resins—depend on the performance of the general economy, and dicyclopentadiene consumption tends to swing with changes in GDP.
The United States, Western Europe, China and Japan are the largest producing and consuming regions, consuming 33%, 19%, 18% and 14% of the world's supply in 2011, respectively. Global consumption is forecast to grow at an average annual rate of 2.5% for 2011–2017, but will only partially make up for the drastic consumption declines during the economic recession of 2008–2009. Early demand estimates for 2012 suggest further declines as the global economy began to slow by midyear.
World dicyclopentadiene consumption will grow fastest in China with an estimated average annual growth of 5.7% during 2011–2017. Of the other major consuming countries/regions, the United States will experience the greatest increase but by less than 2% annually. Japanese and Western European demand is forecast to increase by an average annual rate of less than 1%.