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Egypt’s PVC markets extend drops into January

by Başak Ceylan -
  • 11/01/2022 (03:09)
The extended losses in both import and domestic PVC K67-68 prices hardly came as a surprise for Egypt’s market players. As the buying appetite continued to grow weaker on players’ aversion to buying in a falling market, the pressure on prices increased. A local producer also approached the market with price cuts in January.

US PVC offers continue to decline w-o-w

Offers for US-origin PVC K67-68 ended last week $20-50/ton lower at a range of $1700-1830/ton CIF Egypt ($1734-1867/ton including 2% customs duty). A key factor undermining the buying interest towards the US materials was increased costs amid the recent anti-dumping duties imposed on US cargoes. "We are doing back-to-back business as buyers are showing limited interest in US materials given the rising costs," a trader said.

Irregular origins appear, Chinese PVC holds steady

At the same time, Ukrainian PVC K67-68 showed up following a long absence at a level of $1750-1760/ton CIF Egypt in early January. Egypt’s PVC markets saw a wider variety of offers from other origins in early December, with Mexican offers providing a more competitive edge as compared to the US offers.

Although Chinese sellers increased both local and export offers last week —snapping a downtrend that lasted for much of the final quarter— Chinese origin PVC K67-68 offers were assessed stable at $1500-1710/ton CIF Egypt ($1530-1744/ton including 2% customs duty) during the first week of 2022. “Sellers began to mirror the rising Dalian futures, in response to higher coal prices but frail demand and relatively ample supplies kept offers steady in Egypt,” a trader commented.

Egypt – Prices – Local – PVC
Local market down 28% since peak in October 2021

In the distribution market, levels were largely stable last week at EGP32,000-35,000/ton ($1787-1954/ton w/o VAT) on ex-warehouse, cash inc VAT basis, with players reporting a supply-demand balance. Accordingly, thin buying appetite resulting from tight cash flows and slow final-product sales acted as a balancing factor during the first week of January.

According to ChemOrbis Price Index, local prices have decreased by around 28% since peaking in October 2021, tracking the changes in import pricing. The distribution market now stands at the lowest since early August 2021.

Sanmar cuts offers for 3rd time, EPC delays restart

Egypt’s local PVC producer, TCI Sanmar, announced January offers with decreases of EGP2368/ton ($151/ton) from mid-December. This marked the third price cut since mid-November.

Meanwhile, EPC —one of the two local producers— postponed the restart of plant operations until the middle of January. The plant was originally scheduled for a two-month maintenance shutdown on June 15, 2021. This was first postponed to the beginning of July 2021 and then the shutdown has been extended since then..
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