Toluene diisocyanate price February 2024 and outlook (see chart below)

  • North America:US$1.89/KG, -3.1% down
  • Europe:US$2.14/KG, -4.9% down
  • Northeast Asia:US$2.09/KG, -5% down
  • Southeast Asia:US$2.25/KG, -3% down
  • Middle East:US$2.13/KG, 3.4% up
The chart below summarizes TDI price trend per region, as well as the outlook. It takes a moment to load.

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Toluene diisocyanate (TDI) price index

This post is a summary of the global Toluene Diisocyanate (TDI) price developments. The price developments of global Toluene Diisocyanate (TDI) are expressed in US$ prices converted FX rates applicable at the time when the price was valid. TDI price index developments are calculated from multiple separate sources of data to ensure statistical accuracy.

The outlook for global Toluene Diisocyanate (TDI) prices, on the second tab, is generated from different inputs including:

  • Very recent price developments of immediate cost drivers of global Toluene Diisocyanate (TDI) prices
  • Recent price developments of underlying feedstocks which drive the price of Toluene Diisocyanate (TDI)
  • Market futures for both cost drives and feedstocks of global Toluene Diisocyanate (TDI) prices
  • Adjustment of current supply/demand imbalances in theToluene Diisocyanate (TDI) market
  • Longer term trends in likely demand conditions

Further information on the Toluene diisocyanate (TDI) price chart

 

What is TDI

Toluene diisocyanate (TDI) is a chemical compound that is used primarily in the production of polyurethane foams and other polyurethane-based products. It is an aromatic diisocyanate, which means it contains two isocyanate functional groups (-NCO) and a benzene ring.

TDI is a highly reactive compound and can cause severe respiratory irritation and sensitization in people who are exposed to it. It is usually produced by the reaction of toluene with phosgene to form a chlorinated intermediate, which is then reacted with an amine to form TDI.

TDI is primarily used in the production of flexible and rigid polyurethane foams, such as those used in furniture, bedding, automotive interiors, and insulation. It is also used in the production of adhesives, coatings, and sealants. However, due to its toxicity and potential health hazards, its use is tightly regulated in many countries.

 

How is TDI produced

Toluene diisocyanate (TDI) is typically produced via a phosgenation reaction, which involves several steps. Here is a brief overview of the process:

Nitration

Toluene is first nitrated to form a mixture of ortho-, meta-, and para-nitrotoluene isomers.

Reduction

The nitrotoluene mixture is then reduced to form a mixture of the corresponding toluene diamines (TDA), which are the precursors to TDI.

Phosgenation

The TDA mixture is reacted with phosgene in the presence of a catalyst to form a mixture of TDI isomers.

Separation and purification

The TDI isomers are then separated and purified using various methods, such as fractional distillation, solvent extraction, and crystallization.

The exact process conditions and parameters may vary depending on the specific TDI isomer and the production facility.

 

What are the key feedstocks for TDI

The two key feedstocks used to produce Toluene Diisocyanate (TDI) are toluene and phosgene.

Toluene is a petrochemical that is produced by the catalytic reforming of naphtha or other refinery streams. It is a colorless liquid with a sweet, aromatic odor, and it is commonly used as a solvent and as a feedstock for the production of a variety of chemicals, including TDI.

Phosgene, on the other hand, is a highly reactive gas that is produced by the reaction of carbon monoxide and chlorine. It is a toxic and hazardous substance that can cause severe respiratory irritation and damage. Therefore, it is handled with extreme care and used only in controlled environments, such as chemical plants that produce TDI.

 

Which industries use TDI

Toluene diisocyanate (TDI) is a key chemical intermediate that is used in the production of a wide range of polyurethane-based products, including:

Flexible polyurethane foam

TDI is a major feedstock for the production of flexible polyurethane foam, which is used in a variety of applications, such as furniture, bedding, automotive seating, and insulation.

Rigid polyurethane foam

TDI is also used in the production of rigid polyurethane foam, which is used in construction, insulation, and packaging applications.

Coatings and adhesives

TDI is used as a raw material in the production of polyurethane coatings and adhesives, which are used in various industries, such as automotive, aerospace, and construction.

Elastomers

TDI is used in the production of polyurethane elastomers, which are used in various applications, such as conveyor belts, wheels, and seals.

Other applications

TDI is also used in the production of several other polyurethane-based products, such as synthetic leather, shoe soles, and gaskets.

The demand for TDI is driven by the growth of these end-use industries, as well as by the increasing demand for lightweight and high-performance materials that offer better energy efficiency, comfort, and durability. However, the TDI market is also subject to several challenges, such as the volatility of raw material prices, the environmental and health concerns, and the competition from alternative materials and technologies.

 

Which countries produce the most TDI

The production of Toluene Diisocyanate (TDI) is concentrated in a few major producing countries. According to the latest available data from 2020, the top TDI-producing countries are:

China

China is the world’s largest producer of TDI, accounting for over 40% of the global production. The country’s TDI production is driven by its rapidly growing economy and the increasing demand for polyurethane foams and other products in various industries.

Germany

Germany is the second-largest producer of TDI, with a market share of around 15%. The country is home to several large chemical companies that have a significant presence in the global TDI market.

United States

The United States is the third-largest producer of TDI, with a market share of around 10%. The country’s TDI production is driven by the strong demand from the automotive, construction, and furniture industries.

South Korea

South Korea is a significant producer of TDI, with a market share of around 5%. The country’s TDI production is driven by the growing demand for polyurethane-based products in various end-use industries.

Other notable TDI-producing countries include Japan, Taiwan, India, and Saudi Arabia. However, the TDI market is also subject to significant fluctuations and volatility, depending on the global supply and demand dynamics, raw material prices, and other factors.

 

Market size of TDI

The global toluene diisocyanate (TDI) market size was valued at USD 6.4 billion in 2020 and is expected to reach USD 8.5 billion by 2027, according to a report by Grand View Research. The market is projected to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 4.0% from 2021 to 2027.

The growth of the TDI market is driven by the increasing demand for polyurethane foams and other polyurethane-based products in various end-use industries, such as furniture, construction, automotive, and packaging. The growing construction and infrastructure development activities in emerging economies, especially in the Asia-Pacific region, are expected to create significant growth opportunities for the TDI market.

However, the TDI market is also subject to several challenges and constraints, such as the stringent environmental and health regulations, the volatility of raw material prices, and the increasing competition from alternative materials and technologies. The market is also impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic, which has disrupted global supply chains and caused fluctuations in demand and prices.

According to https://oec.world/ :

Isocyanates are the world’s 674th most traded product.

In 2020, the top exporters of Isocyanates were Germany ($767M), China ($719M), Hungary ($518M), South Korea ($512M), and Japan ($415M).

In 2020, the top importers of Isocyanates were China ($401M), Italy ($255M), Belgium ($227M), Germany ($213M), and Turkey ($190M).

 

Further information

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