In August PE imports in Russia increased by one third

(MRC) -- In August, there was a slight decline of PE imports in Russia. In general, following January - August results, the total PE import to the Russian market increased by one third and exceeded 350 KT, acсording to MRC ScanPlast.

Following August results, total import volume exceeded 45.6 KT. HDPE supplies reduced by almost 2KT and EVA copolymer - by 20%.

In August, HDPE imports dropped to 22.8 KT. Deliveries of HDPE for extrusion coating of large diameter steel pipes decreased to 5.3 KT. Also supplies of blown PE from external markets significantly dropped, in particular, from Shurtan GhK, Uzbekistan. In general, over the first eight months, total HDPE imports to the Russian market have grown by 36% year on year and made 194.5 KT.

Despite the increase of pipe HDPE production in Russia, import remains high. This summer, pipe PE imports to Russia exceeded 7 KT. Main volumes fall at producers from South Korea, Thailand and Taiwan, the share of European material does not exceed 30%.

Last month linear polyethylene imports actually remained at July's level - slightly more than 14 KT. Reduction of film PE imports for extrusion sector was compensated by increased LLDPE imports for rotational molding from Asia. In general, following January - August results, total LLDPE imports to the Russian market made nearly 93 KT, that was by 34% more year on year.

Following January - August results, total PE and its copolymers imports to the Russian market exceeded 350 KT, that was by 33% more year on year. Over the eight months, the total PE production in Russia exceeded 1 mln tons.


US butyl acetate sources expect prices to drop in October by 8-10%

(ICIS) -- US butyl acetate (butac) sources expect prices to drop in October by 8-10% because of falling propylene spot prices, sources said on Tuesday. OXEA is seeking a 3 cent/lb (USD 66/tonne, EUR 49/tonne) increase for 1 October, which buyers said has no chance for acceptance.

Germany-based OXEA, and Dow Chemical and Eastman of the US, tried to raise prices by 3 cents/lb in September, but the market rejected the proposals because of declining raw material costs.
Another buyer attributed the expected drop in October to the ongoing decline in feedstock US propylene. Butac distributor prices, the main consumer range, have hovered at 96-100 cents/lb since early August.

Spot chemical-grade propylene has slipped roughly 10% in price since early August, currently at 70.50-71.00 cents/lb, according to ICIS.


Asia EPS prices declined further this week following a sharp fall in SM values

(ICIS) -- Asia expandable polystyrene (EPS) prices declined further this week following a sharp fall in feedstock styrene monomer (SM) values, producers and buyers said on Wednesday. Spot SM prices tumbled to USD 1,350/tonne (EUR 986/tonne) CFR (cost & freight) China on 27 September, down from USD 1,500/tonne CFR China a month ago. The decline in feedstock prices put EPS producers under pressure to reduce resin prices. Offers of EPS resins declined to USD 1,600-1,610/tonne CFR China this week, down from USD 1,660-1,670/tonne last week. However, buying interest remains limited. ⌠Demand is still weak despite the lower offers as buyers are mostly non-committal, said a Taiwanese producer.


Asian spot ammonia prices are on an upward trend

(ICIS) -- Asian spot ammonia prices are on an upward trend, supported by strained availability and healthy demand in the region, industry sources said on Wednesday. Buyers are bracing for further increases as the tight supply situation is unlikely to ease, and with prices in other regions also on the rise. In the week ending 22 September, ammonia prices were assessed at USD 520-550/tonne (EUR 380-402/tonne) FOB (free on board) Middle East and at USD 600-610/tonne CFR (cost and freight) Taiwan, according to ICIS.

The Asian ammonia market is usually tightly linked with ammonia indications in Yuzhny, in the Ukraine, and in Tampa, in the US, given that ammonia can sometimes move between regions if there is a supply shortage in one particular area.

Yuzhny ammonia last traded at USD 588/tonne FOB for October, up $13/tonne from the previous week, and about USD 175/tonne higher than a year ago.

October contract prices in Tampa are also anticipated to see a huge price increase to around the USD 650/tonne CFR Tampa mark, from USD 590/tonne CFR Tampa currently. Contract discussions are expected to be finalised at the TFI conference taking place in Chicago this week.


BASF and machine manufacturer Arburg to present multi-faceted subject of energy efficiency

(BASF) -- In a special show at the Fakuma 2011, material producer BASF and machine manufacturer Arburg will present the multi-faceted subject of energy efficiency. Visitors to the East Foyer will be shown measures for increasing energy efficiency in injection molding throughout the entire value-added chain and beyond, thereby reducing unit costs. Using a specially-optimised plastic and the appropriate machine technology, the two companies will demonstrate how new developments can work together to save energy.

On an exhibition area of 100 square metres, the entire injection molding process will be analysed in detail in terms of energy-efficiency: from product design to production planning. As a clear practical example, comparative production with two different plastics will show how energy efficiency can be enhanced by the right choice of material. For this purpose, an electric Arburg Allrounder 370 E will produce test parts from a standard plastic and from a material that was specially improved in terms of its flow characteristics.

The ⌠energy measurement function of the Selogica machine control system registers the energy requirement of the relevant process. The comparison makes clear how an energy-optimised machine, together with a plastic with improved flow characteristics, can contribute to significant energy savings in the injection molding process. Depending on the size of the components and their geometry, the lower processing temperatures and shorter cycle times result in greater energy efficiency, thus reducing unit costs.