18 June, 2018
Local PET prices in Europe have been skyrocketing since late April on the back of extremely tight supplies. Availability has been a major problem in the region since BP declared a force majeure on its PTA supplies in April, which was followed by a PET shutdown. The situation worsened when JBF also appeared with a force majeure on its PET supplies from its Belgium plant at the start of May.
Data from ChemOrbis Price Index reveal that the weekly average of PET prices on FD NWE basis have posted a cumulative gain of almost €300/ton since the start of this year. Local offers have already breached the €1350/ton FD threshold in line with suppliers’ up to three-digit hikes for June, which were accepted by regional buyers.
A distributor said, “We sold out our June allocations and buyers didn’t show any resistance to our hike requests as they really needed the material. The supply situation remains critical, although we heard that BP should lift its force majeure soon and it has already started to improve its PTA production in Belgium. This may be a positive signal for the medium term.”
According to market sources, Indian PET producer JBF Industries has started to raise its production rates at its plant in Geel, Belgium while BP has increased allocations for PTA output from its site also in Geel.
A distributor operating in Switzerland reported that his European supplier does not have any spot availability for June while its July allocation is also limited. “We don’t think that European producers will reduce their prices before September since it will take time to see an improvement in regional supplies despite the recent positive signals from BP and JBF,” he commented.