APIC '07: MRC's China MMA unit runs at full rate

18 May 2007 14:27  [Source: ICIS news]

TAIPEI (ICIS news)--Mitsubishi Rayons methyl methacrylate (MMA) plant at Daya Bay, Huizhou, Guangdong province is operating at full rates after successfully resolving mechanical issues this week, company officials said on Friday.

The facility, owned by Asia’s largest MMA producer, had begun commercial production in October 2006 for a mere six months before it encountered plant troubles from end-April to mid-May.

Company officials at the Asia Petrochemical Industry Conference were reluctant to disclose the exact nature of the problem.

At around the same time, Mitsubishis older 107,000 tonne/year ACH-based MMA facility in Ohtake, Hiroshima prefecture in Japan, was also assailed by unspecified problems.

Total production loss at the two facilities could range from 3,000 to 5,000 tonnes, sources close to the company said.

The companys determination to retain confidentiality about its situation has left many market participants uncertain about the market outlook in Asia in the next few weeks.

Several MMA producers anticipated regional supply to tighten due to the unexpected output loss. This would drive up spot prices in June, they said.

Market talk also emerged that Mitsubishi Rayon might announce price hikes to its customers in June.

Other buyers and sellers highlighted concerns about persistent weak demand conditions in Asia.

They added that it was still too early to make forecasts about price trends until most market participants enter concrete negotiations for June shipments next week.

By: Chan Jingyi
+65 6780 4359

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