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April PE prices cautiously up in Mid-East, Africa; PP firms for 2nd month

by Başak Ceylan -
  • 02/04/2019 (06:20)
Middle Eastern and African PE markets have leaned towards a steady-to-firm trend in April. PE prices followed divergent paths back in March after having been on a steady to soft note during the first two months of the year. PP markets are relatively stronger, meanwhile, as monthly hikes have somewhat gained momentum across the two regions.

Saudi major hikes domestic PP, PE offers

After announcing rollovers for PE and increases for PP last month, a major Saudi producer hiked its new domestic offers for both products by SAR37-75/ton ($10-20/ton) compared to March .

The major producer’s offers witnessed cumulative increases of SAR113/ton ($30/ton) for PP raffia and inj. in March-April while HDPE film and LLDPE c4 film saw hikes of SAR75/ton ($20/ton) , and LDPE film SAR38/ton ($10/ton) in April.

A Saudi distributor stated that the buying appetite in the local was still below the normal levels despite the high season and added they were waiting for the rest of the local suppliers before committing to purchases.

Meanwhile, a different Saudi producer approached the local market with rollovers to increases of SAR37-38/ton ($9-10/ton) from March.

Poor demand dampens hike prospects in Jordan

Jordan, meanwhile, stood out as an exception in April, with stable prices from the Middle Eastern suppliers as the consistently weak demand waved off any possibility of a price increase this month.

A converter reported that the high season and the approaching Ramadan failed to lift the sentiment and that buyers were only making minimum purchases.

Mid-Eastern PP offers firmer in Egypt

Initial offers from three Middle Eastern producers indicated modest increases compared with the latest levels in March. This has been the second consecutive month of increases.

An agent offering on behalf of a Middle Eastern producer stated that they increased April PP offers by $10/ton amid higher upstream costs and added, “We started to receive an increasing number of inquiries from buyers, in line with the high season before Ramadan.”

Another distributor offering on behalf of a Saudi producer echoed the sentiment, mentioning hikes similar to those seen in the Middle Eastern producer’s offers.

A trader who received $20-30/ton increases for PP grades from an Emirati producer said that they were waiting to receive more offers to determine the market direction and added that domestic demand was still subdued.

ELEME’s PP offers up again, PE remains stable

The local producer ELEME has announced its April offers to the domestic market with increases of NGN10,000/ton ($28/ton) for PP grades for a second month in a row but kept its PE prices unchanged from its latest levels in March.

The increases were attributed to limited supply for PP grades due to some production issues while demand was considered mediocre, with hand-to-mouth buying prevailing in the market.
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