Chemical Exports by Country

Chemicals tank truck

Chemical tank truck

Global sales from chemical exports by country totaled US$489.5 billion in 2017.

Overall, the dollar value of exported chemicals fell by an average -15.5% for all exporting countries since 2013 when chemical shipments were valued at $579.4 billion. Year over year, the combined total for exported chemicals appreciated by 8.2% from 2016 to 2017.

Exported inorganic chemicals were valued at $112.3 billion during 2017 (22.9% of the global total) while worldwide organic chemical shipments were much higher at $377.2 billion (77.1%).

The respective 2-digit Harmonized Tariff System code prefixes are 28 for inorganic chemicals and 29 for organic chemicals.

Chemical Exports by Country

Top 15

Below are the 15 countries that exported the highest dollar value worth of chemicals during 2017 encompassing both organic and inorganic chemicals:

  1. China: US$64.8 billion (13.2% of total exported chemicals)
  2. United States: $48.6 billion (9.9%)
  3. Germany: $33.7 billion (6.9%)
  4. Belgium: $32.3 billion (6.6%)
  5. South Korea: $27 billion (5.5%)
  6. Netherlands: $26.1 billion (5.3%)
  7. Ireland: $24.6 billion (5%)
  8. Japan: $22.5 billion (4.6%)
  9. Switzerland: $20.4 billion (4.2%)
  10. Singapore: $16 billion (3.3%)
  11. France: $14.7 billion (3%)
  12. United Kingdom: $12.4 billion (2.5%)
  13. Taiwan: $11.5 billion (2.4%)
  14. India: $11.3 billion (2.3%)
  15. Saudi Arabia: $10.5 billion (2.1%)

The listed 15 countries shipped 76.9% of global chemical exports in 2017 by value.

Among the top chemicals exporters, just two countries improved their combined international sales of organic plus inorganic chemicals. The value of China’s chemical exports rose by 16.1% from 2013 to 2017, while exports of chemicals from Switzerland appreciated by 4.2%.

Those countries that posted declines in their exported chemical sales over the latest 5-year period were led by: Saudi Arabia (down -29.8%), Belgium (down -28.7%), United Kingdom (down -25.9%), Japan (down -25.6%), Germany (down -23.8%) and India (down -23.8%).

Organic

The following list showcases the top 15 exporters of organic chemicals in 2017.

  1. China: US$49.7 billion (13.2% of exported organic chemicals)
  2. United States: $36.2 billion (9.6%)
  3. Belgium: $29 billion (7.7%)
  4. Germany: $25.1 billion (6.7%)
  5. Ireland: $23.8 billion (6.3%)
  6. South Korea: $22.7 billion (6%)
  7. Netherlands: $21.5 billion (5.7%)
  8. Switzerland: $19.9 billion (5.3%)
  9. Japan: $17.9 billion (4.7%)
  10. Singapore: $15.5 billion (4.1%)
  11. France: $11.1 billion (2.9%)
  12. United Kingdom: $10.4 billion (2.8%)
  13. India: $10.1 billion (2.7%)
  14. Saudi Arabia: $9.8 billion (2.6%)
  15. Taiwan: $9.6 billion (2.5%)

The listed 15 countries shipped 82.8% of organic chemical exports in 2017 by value.

Global exports of organic chemicals fell in value by -16.8% since 2013 but appreciated by 6.8% from 2016 to 2017.

Only two among these top exporters grew the value of their international sales of organic chemicals over the 5-year period starting in 2013. China’s exports of organic chemicals rose 17.3% trailed by the 5.3% gain for Switzerland.

Leading the decliners for global organic chemical sales were exporters in Japan (down -32%), Belgium (down -29%) and Saudi Arabia (down -26.1%).

Inorganic

The following list highlights the leading 15 exporters of inorganic chemicals in 2017.

  1. China: US$15 billion (13.4% of exported inorganic chemicals)
  2. United States: $12.4 billion (11%)
  3. Germany: $8.6 billion (7.6%)
  4. Australia: $6.1 billion (5.5%)
  5. Netherlands: $4.7 billion (4.1%)
  6. Japan: $4.6 billion (4.1%)
  7. South Korea: $4.4 billion (3.9%)
  8. Brazil: $3.9 billion (3.4%)
  9. France: $3.6 billion (3.2%)
  10. Canada: $3.4 billion (3%)
  11. Belgium: $3.3 billion (2.9%)
  12. Russia: $2.7 billion (2.4%)
  13. Kazakhstan: $2.2 billion (1.9%)
  14. United Kingdom: $2 billion (1.8%)
  15. Taiwan: $2 billion (1.8%)

The listed 15 countries shipped 70.2% of inorganic chemical exports in 2017 by value.

International shipments of inorganic chemicals depreciated by -11.1% since 2013 but rose in value by 13.1% from 2016 to 2017.

Among these top exporters of inorganic chemicals, the greatest percentage improvement from 2013 to 2017 is the 40.9% increase for South Korea.

In second place was Brazil (up 38%) trailed by Taiwan (up 24.7%), Japan (up 17.5%), China (up 10.5%) then Australia (up 2.1%).

Leading the decliners for worldwide organic chemical sales were exporters in Russia (down -66.8%), United Kingdom (down -48.8%), Canada (down -33.2%) and Kazakhstan (down -30.7%).

Companies

According to Chemical & Engineering News, the following companies are major players in global chemical sales:

  1. BASF (Germany)
  2. Dow Chemical (United States)
  3. Sinopec (China)
  4. SABIC (Saudi Arabia)
  5. ExxonMobil (United States)
  6. Formosa Plastics (Taiwan)
  7. LyondellBasell Industries (United States)
  8. DuPont (United States)
  9. Ineos (Switzerland)
  10. Bayer (Germany)


See also Highest Value Chinese Export Products and China’s Top Trading Partners

Research Sources:
Trade Map, International Trade Centre. Accessed on June 5, 2018

Chemical & Engineering News, Volume 93 Issue 30, pp. 14-26. Accessed on June 5, 2018