Shell to stop Europe MIBK deliveries for 8 days of maintenance

04 February 2010 16:09  [Source: ICIS news]

LONDON (ICIS news)--Shell will not supply any material to the European methyl isobutyl ketone (MIBK) market from 10 February to 18 February due to planned maintenance, a company source at the global petrochemical major said on Thursday.

The maintenance involves repairs to a gantry at Shell's plant in Pernis, the Netherlands, meaning that the company would be unable to load MIBK for approximately eight days, the source added.

Other solvents produced at the plant, including ispropanol (IPA) and methyl ethyl ketone (MEK), were not affected by the maintenance, the source confirmed.

Production of MIBK would continue throughout the repair period, to be stockpiled for later use, the source added.

According to ICIS plants and projects, the Pernis plant can produce 45,000 tonnes/year of MIBK.

The announcement came amid tight European supply, due to strengthening demand linked to improvements in macro economic conditions, buyers and sellers said. There were also rumours of production problems at other European MIBK plants, and availability of material was low.

Tight supply in the market led to spot price increases of €30-40/tonne ($42-56/tonne) last week, to €1,050-1,100/tonne FD (free delivered) NWE (northwest Europe), according to global chemical market intelligence service ICIS pricing. There were expectations of further price increases through February, but sources said it was too early to predict the extent of any rise.

($1 = €0.72)

For more on MIBK visit ICIS chemical intelligence
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By: Mark Victory
+44 208 652 3214



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