30 September 2009 11:46 [Source: ICIS news]
TOKYO (ICIS news)--Japan’s production of caustic soda in August increased 4.1% month on month to 354,921 tonnes, the first time since September 2008 that monthly production had reached the 350,000-tonne mark, an industry official said on Wednesday.
August production was down 8.6% from the same period last year; a smaller year-on-year decline than July’s, the official from the Japan Soda Industry Association (JSIA) said.
While caustic soda production improved month on month, domestic demand in August was down 0.9% from July at 278,910 tonnes, the official said.
The official added that domestic demand had been slow to recover, but it had improved compared with March.
Overall shipments of caustic soda increased 5.5% to 361,930 tonnes in August from July, thanks to robust exports, the official added.
A total of 83,020 tonnes of caustic soda was exported in August, up 34.7% from the previous month, according to the JSIA.
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As a result of increased exports, inventories of caustic soda dropped by 5.6% to 117,380 tonnes in August from July, the official added.
August was the first time since June 2005 that caustic soda inventories had dropped below 120,000 tonnes, according to the JSIA.
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