06 March 2009 21:36 [Source: ICIS news]
LONDON (ICIS news)--Producers confirmed on Friday four planned maintenance shutdowns in the European caustic soda market.
German producer Vinnolit plans to close its 281,000 tonne/year Knapsack facility on 25 April until 15 March for a routine maintenance operation. Following this, the ongoing force majeuere at the facility could be lifted.
Key producer Akzo Nobel also announced plans to close its 630,000 tonne/year Botlek plant in the Netherlands for a five-week outage in the middle of March.
INEOS Chlor also confirmed that a shutdown would take place towards the end of April that would last for approximately four weeks at its 660,000 tonne/year site in Runcorn, UK.
French supplier Arkema would also perform a maintenance outage, closing its 305,000 tonne/year Fos facility for a fortnight in March, before shutting production at Jarrie, with a capacity of 190,000 tonne/year, in April.
All company sources canvassed said that stocks had been built in preparation for the shutdowns and that there would be no shortfall for contractual buyers.
A major northwest European producer said that several manufacturers could be extending the planned shutdowns in an attempt to balance the lengthening market. However this view was not widely held by players in the market.
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