The start of Corona pandemic created in the spring of 2020 a worldwide downfall of economic and industrial activities overall, which in turn leaded to a significant reduction of crude oil consumption and consequently, the oil industry decreased the production volumes following demand and the commodity price.
At the end of 2020, with the ceasing in Asia of the pandemic effects, this process turned around: the demand of crude oil recovered to normal levels and as it takes time for that specific industry to readjust production capacities, a shortage of crude oil and a sharp increase of prices were created. The derivates of crude oil are the polymers used for plastic production and followed the same evolution as the base raw material.
Meanwhile, Corona restrictions and lockdowns created an extra demand for plastic products in food packaging.
All these events plus the 6-day blockage in the Suez Canal leaded recently to an explosion of the price for plastic products raw materials.
See the enclosed press release of the European Union of Plastic Converters.