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Tightness leads to renewed PP hikes in China; Saudi raffia moves above $1000 CIF

by Merve Sezgün -
by Pınar Polat -
  • 12/11/2020 (05:18)
Import PP prices in China stabilized last week at their highest levels in more than a year, with players arguing if that was the peak amid tapering demand. However, the uptrend has been resumed so far, as tight import availability has encouraged overseas sellers to seek fresh hikes in deals.

In addition to the ongoing availability limitations, players cited the recently increased feedstock propylene prices and the early-week gains in PP futures among factors supporting the uptrend. Higher crude oil futures amid the promising vaccine news and the result of the US elections also contributed to market sentiment.

Mid-Eastern raffia offers move above $1000/ton CIF

Homo-PP raffia offers for Middle Eastern origins were up $20-30/ton from last week to stand at $990-1030/ton CIF China, cash. Last week, the high end of the price range was stable at $1000/ton.

As for PPBC injection, offers for Middle Eastern origins witnessed weekly increases of up to $50/ton, standing at $1030-1080/ton on similar terms.

Data from ChemOrbis Price Index reveal that the weekly averages of Middle Eastern PP prices on CIF China basis are currently standing at their highest levels since around September 2019.

SE Asian market remains tight, keeping overall PP sentiment firm

Players mostly pointed to the ongoing supply tightness in the neighboring Southeast Asian market as the main factor lifting China’s sentiment.

“The high demand season is already over in China and buying interest is not as strong as it was in September and October. However, tapering demand has been offset by reduced import supplies, as overseas sellers have shifted their focus to Southeast Asia where supplies are tight and prices are higher,” a regional trader explained.

Homo-PP raffia offers for Middle Eastern origins were reported $20-40/ton from last week at $1040-1100/ton CIF SEA, cash. The average of CIF SEA prices is currently $60/ton above CIF China prices.

Feedstock propylene regains strength

Following three consecutive weeks of decreases, spot propylene prices on CFR China basis started to pare their losses late last week after the news that South Korea’s LG Chem had to shut its Yeosu cracker due to a fire.

According to ChemOrbis Price Wizard, spot propylene prices have jumped $45/ton from late last week to be recently assessed at $910/ton CFR China.
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