Ethylene prices firmed in Asia, as demand in downstream polyethylene (PE) markets remains robust and upstream energy prices rise, according to Polymerupdate, with CFR Northeast Asia ethylene prices hitting $855/tonne and CFR Southeast Asia prices at $840/tonne. A trader contacted by Polymerupdate expects ethylene prices to cross $900/tonne CFR within June, and although the gains will squeeze margins, PE producers are expected to continue to enjoy good margins due to rising high-density, linear low-density, and low-density PE prices.
Propylene rose in Asia due to a steady lift in polypropylene (PP) demand, coupled with gains in crude and Asian naphtha. Rates last Wednesday rose to $820/tonne FOB Korea and $900/tonne CFR China.
Polypropylene (PP) injection and raffia prices rose last Friday to $1090/tonne CFR Far East Asia, with Monday-morning offers above $1100/tonne CFR.
Polyethylene (PE) was on the rise, with high-density polyethylene (HDPE) film hitting $1235/tonne CFR Far East Asia last Thursday. Low-density polyethylene (LDPE) prices were assessed at $1190/tonne CFR Far East Asia, with linear low-density polyethylene (LLDPE) prices at $1175/tonne CFR Far East Asia.
Polyvinyl chloride (PVC) prices gained in synch with rising crude, naphtha, ethylene, and vinyl chloride monomer. China PVC prices hit $800/tonne CFR, up $20/tonne from the previous week. Southeast Asia prices were also assessed at $800/tonne CFR, and with ethylene prices at $850/tonne CFR and VCM at $700/tonne, July offers rose above $850/tonne CFR China on Friday. A PVC buyer contacted by Polymerupdate said Asian PVC supplies remain tight and exhausted inventories need to be replenished.
Polystyrene (PS) prices raced higher in Asia on rising crude, naphtha, ethylene, and benzene. General-purpose polystyrene prices rose $60/tonne to $1090/tonne CFR China, with CFR Southeast Asia prices at $1080/tonne. High-impact polystyrene prices climbed to $1190/tonne CFR China and CFR Southeast Asia. PS prices look to remain bullish, with ethylene at $850/tonne CFR Asia, benzene ranging from $785-$790/tonne FOB Korea, and SM from $1035-$1040/tonne FOB Korea.
Acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS) prices were higher on feedstock increases and a lift in regional buying. CFR China ABS prices rose to $1390-$1400/tonne, with July offers from Korea at $1420/tonne CFR China. Run rates at a South Korean and Taiwanese ABS plant were reported between 80% and 90%. In related plant news, PetroChina’s Jilin and Daqing Petrochemical’s ABS units remain shut for maintenance. These outages have helped fuel a spike in Chinese ABS, as they rose RMB 500/tonne last week. —[email protected]