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Asian styrene market set for turnarounds in H1 of 2018

  • 20/12/2017 (04:04)
Players in the Asian styrene market report that several plants across the region are slated to be shut for maintenance in the first half of 2018. Spot styrene prices have been witnessing a downward correction for the past two weeks on the back of the increasing supplies in China after more than a month of firming.

Although the recent softening resulted in a weekly decrease of around $50/ton as of December 19, prices are still standing above their mid-November levels.

However, the upcoming shutdowns particularly in February as well as the ongoing bullish run of the energy market may help the sentiment firm back up, some argue.

The maintenance period is to be started by Taiwan’s Grand Pacific Petrochemical Corp. The company’s styrene plant with 130,000 tons/year of capacity is expected to undergo maintenance for six weeks in a period between February and March.

In late February, Japan’s Nippon Steel will shut its 230,000 tons/year plant for maintenance to last for around 50 days. The company’s 190,000 tons/year capacity styrene plant will also be shut on March 10 to remain offline for around 30 days.

South Korea’s LG Chem is planning to shut its styrene plant for maintenance in a period between March and April. The 500,000 tons/year plant is expected to remain shut for 20 days.

Although the exact months are yet to be specified, Styrindo Mono Indonesia and South Korea’s Hanwha Total Petrochemical are also slated to conduct maintenance shutdowns at their plants in the first quarter of 2018. Styrindo Mono Indonesia’s 100,000 tons/year styrene plant is expected to be offline for a month while Hanwha Total Petrochemical’s 650,000 tons/year styrene plant will be shut for 2 weeks.

When it comes to May, South Korea’s Lotte Chemical is planning to shut its 580,000 tons/year styrene plant for maintenance. The plant is expected to resume operations after 60 days.

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