29 May 2009 23:59 [Source: ICIS news]
LONDON (ICIS news)--Soda ash prices in the Black Sea area have softened by $10-20/tonne (€7-14/tonne) due to weak demand which was not expected to improve in the short term, market sources said on Friday.
“Prices have been slipping bit by bit over the last few months as, to remain competitive in the poor demand climate, producers are having to reduce prices,” a manufacturer said.
Buyers agreed, saying that weak consumption from a variety of sectors, ranging from automotive to detergent, was the cause for the drop.
Current pricing was assessed at $285-305/tonne for dense and light soda ash, both on a free on board (FOB) ?xml:namespace>
Sources in the region said that prices would bottom out after June.
“Prices should stabilise in early Q3 but it is unlikely demand will perk up significantly,” a manufacturer said.
In northwest Europe, prices were stable at $325-350/tonne for dense soda ash and $325-340/tonne for light soda ash, both on a free on board northwest
“Nevertheless, demand is still feeble, and the outlook is not particularly bright,” a European trader said.
($1 = €0.72)
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