The Asia-Pacific region is the largest-consuming region in the world and will experience a high level of product demand growth in the future. Overall, demand in the region will increase by an average of 1.8% per year between 2011 and 2035. This reflects the impact of lower demand growth in industrialized countries as well as higher demand growth in the more populous developing countries.
This level of demand growth will require a very aggressive pace of refining expansion. Although the Asia-Pacific region has spare refining capacity, near-term expansions will increase the surplus. Longer term, this spare refining capacity will be absorbed over the next few years and large-capacity investments will be needed between 2011 and 2035. The region will initially meet this challenge through plans for new capacity currently under way. In the longer term, regional refining output will likely lag behind demand despite continued expansion of refining capacity.
The region will grow more dependent on imported crude and refined petroleum products, yet struggle with the capital investment required for compliance with sulfur reduction initiatives.