Argentina PP producers seek December hikes

06 December 2007 00:39  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS news)--Polypropylene (PP) producers in Argentina are seeking price increases for all grades to recover margins affected by higher raw material and energy costs, producer and buyer sources said on Wednesday.

Market participants received the first indications of December price changes a few days ago, but the increases were being implemented this week, effective on Monday, sources said.

The amount of the increase sought by one producer was Argentine Pesos (Ps) 200/tonne (about $63/tonne), while the other was seeking to raise prices by Ps250/tonne (about $80/tonne). The lower increase was taking hold, according to buyers.

The prices prior to the increases were in the range of $1,635-1,857/tonne for homopolymers, raffia and injection material, according to global chemical market intelligence service ICIS pricing.

PP production margins took a hit with the November settlement of feedstock propylene in benchmark US Gulf markets heard at plus 7.25 cents/lb ($159.83/tonne), which raised the price of chemical-grade propylene (CGP) to 60 cents/lb ($1,322.76/tonne).

With this in mind, it appears that the increase sought by Argentine PP producers in December does not restore margins to early November conditions.

PP producers in Argentina are Petroquímica Cuyo (120,000 tonnes/year) and Petroquímica Ensenada (Petroken) (180,000 tonnes/year).

($1.00 = Ps 3.15)

By: George Martin
+1 713 525 2653

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