08 July 2008 13:02 [Source: ICIS news]
SHANGHAI (ICIS news)--Caustic soda exports from the eastern Chinese province of Shandong may decline in August due to shipping restriction at the port of Qingdao, which would host the Olympic sailing event, producers and traders said on Tuesday.
"We received an official announcement that ships were prohibited to anchor at the local Qingdao port between 9:00 am to 5:00 pm during the sailing event from 8 to 23 August," a local caustic soda producer said in Mandarin adding they would have to consider finishing loading in other time slots.
"It’s very difficult to export caustic soda from Qingdao port as time is not enough to finish loading. You know, caustic soda loading speed is about 250 dry tonnes/hour," the producer added.
Caustic soda loading capacity is 10,000-20,000 dry tonnes/ship, which meant that it would normally take between 40-80 hours to load a ship and the latest restrictions would force the producers to take longer to load each ship, the producer said.
At present, two major producers export around 18,000-19,000 dry tonnes of caustic soda per month from Qingdao port and they would have to look for alternatives to ensure that their exports were not affected during the Olympics.
"We will try our best to ensure our exports beyond the restriction period, may be in early August or late August. However, we still have no confidence to export normal volumes in August," one producer said.
Another producer said they were considering exporting their goods from the smaller Yantai port from where they could export almost 6,000 dry tonnes of caustic soda in August. Their normal export volumes are about 10,000 dry tonnes each month.
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