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Chinese traders looking to divert US HDPE cargoes to SEA amid new tariffs

  • 21/08/2018 (04:19)
Several traders operating in China report that they are seeking to divert their currently in-transit US HDPE goods to Southeast Asia before the new tariffs on US HDPE and LLDPE come into force on August 23.

A trader based in Ningbo reported that he cut its HDPE injection prices for a US origin by around $65/ton from last week, saying, “Our cargoes are currently on the way to China, yet we are trying to divert them to Southeast Asia before they arrive as China is readying to impose 25% tariffs on US imports in a few days. The new tariff list also includes LLDPE, yet we think that it will not be affected as much as HDPE.”

According to data from the Chinese Customs Administration, the country imported a total of almost 300,000 tons of HDPE from the United States last year. The US was the sixth largest HDPE supplier to China, following Saudi Arabia, Iran, the UAE, South Korea and Thailand. China’s overall HDPE imports, meanwhile, totaled around 6.4 million tons in 2017.

Another trader in China also noted that they received US HDPE offers for large quantities over the past few days, saying, “Chinese traders might achieve good deals by selling these cargoes to Southeast Asia.”

Meanwhile, players in Southeast Asia have already started to receive an increasing number of US PE offers since last week as was mentioned earlier in ChemOrbis Plastics News Competitive US PE offers emerge in SEA after latest round of US-China tariffs. This was in line with their expectations that Southeast Asia may become US sellers’ primary preference as an export outlet since US cargoes may not offer a competitive edge in China after the approaching implementation of the latest round of tariffs.
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