Asia Q1 melamine contract settles lower at $1,200-1,350/t

21 May 2009 04:24  [Source: ICIS news]

SINGAPORE (ICIS news)--A majority of Asian melamine players have concluded their first quarter (Q1) contracts down by $650-1,000/tonne at $1,200-1,350/tonne (€468-720/tonne) due to poor demand, producers and buyers said on Thursday.

They said weak demand due to global economic downturn coupled with falling feedstock costs attributed to the steep decrease in contract prices of around 40% compared to the previous fourth quarter contract prices in 2008. Q4 contract prices were settled at $1,850-2,350/tonne CFR (cost and freight) Asia.

Major producers were initially targeting higher Q1 contract prices at $1,500-1,600/tonne CFR Asia citing squeezed margins.

However, they had to subsequently adjust their offers down, due to softer feedstock costs. 

Demand from the downstream wood plying, adhesive and table ware sectors was too weak to support higher prices, traders added.

"The global melamine market has remained weak," said a southeast Asian buyer.

Traders said that players were taking around 30-35% less contract volumes compared with the same period last year, underscoring a lack of downstream demand.

($1 = €0.74)

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By: Yu Guo
+65 6780 4359

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