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February quotes of ACN zoom into stratosphere
Jan '10
Raw material costs of propylene continue to rise due to supply constraints and strong demand from China. February stock quotes of Acrylonitrile (ACN) in Asia have now shot up to US $2,000-2,100 per ton (CFR Asia).

This is up by more than $200 per ton from mid-December. This flare up in prices is mainly attributed to plant maintenance of some plants in Asia, plus tight supply caused by plant shutdown of some European plants.

In Asia, Japan Asahi Kasei Corporation, Tae Kwang Industry and China Petroleum and Chemical Industry Development Corporation in Taiwan plan to carry out plant maintenance in the first four months of this year.

In Germany, Ineos closed one set of ethylene cracker in December last year leading to announcement of force majeure at its 300,000 ton / year of acrylonitrile production unit.

In addition, Russia's Lukoil unit in Saratov (150,000 ton / year of acrylonitrile) and Ineos's Sealsands unit in UK (230,000 ton / year of acrylonitrile) have further reduced supply to Europe due to production problems.

The tight supply situation is also caused by another major factor. China's market demand is robust. As Chinese traders accumulate stocks before the Lunar New Year holidays in mid-February, domestic acrylonitrile price in China has skyrocketed to 17,000 ~ 17,500 Yuan / ton (US $2489 ~ 2562 / ton), up 2,000 Yuan / ton compared with mid-December.

Chinese traders also import acrylonitrile from the United States and Latin America. In the first two months of this year, China is expected to import more than 15,000 tons of acrylonitrile products from the United States, Mexico and Brazil.

In addition, rising raw material prices also give support to acrylonitrile price. January propylene contract price for chemical grade in the United States rose 3 cents / pound to 55.50 cents / pound, which will increase production cost of acrylonitrile to above US $70 / ton.

Fibre2fashion News Desk

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