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Sellers: PP demand not up to expectations in Europe

by ChemOrbis Editorial Team - content@chemorbis.com
  • 10/03/2017 (14:59)
Widespread supply concerns have pushed spot PP prices to a 20-month-high in March across Europe. Tightness is particularly in place for copolymer grades as Ducor and LyondellBasell declared force majeure on their PP production while Ineos, Borealis and Sabic are also conducting planned maintenance shutdowns at their PP plants.

Accordingly, sellers are firm on their March PP increases of up to €100/ton. On the other hand, these increases for a third consecutive month appear to have slowed down the buying interest as buyers are either limiting or skipping their purchases this month.

An Italian converter commented, “We are surprised about the hike targets that doubled the gains in the monthly propylene contracts. We will skip purchasing this month. Our suppliers stand firm on their offers but we hold enough stocks until May given our poorly performing end demand.”

Sellers also concur that demand is not up to their expectations despite the ongoing tightness. A West European producer said, “We have not lifted force majeure on PP copolymer supplies yet. Therefore, our current stock level is low but our orders are disappointing for the moment due to the pre-buying activity in the previous months.”

A distributor of a West European producer also reported tighter availability for PP copolymer; however, he noted that demand is not strong in Germany and Benelux so far this month but he expects an improvement in the next weeks.

A distributor in the Netherlands who also reported limited availability for copolymers said, “Our supplier is seeking increases of €100/ton, but converters are buying hand to mouth. That’s why, they expect slight revisions in our current offers.”
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