18 February 2010 12:46 [Source: ICIS news]
LONDON (ICIS news)--Mider Helm declared force majeure on methanol supplies from its 660,000 tonne/year plant at Leuna, Germany, on Wednesday, a company source said on Thursday.
The declaration followed an explosion at the plant at 01.27 local time on Tuesday. The source said that news of the duration of the outage would not be available until next week.
Market participants said the lack of information from Mider Helm could be a possible indication of serious damage, and several guessed that it could be out for at least three to four weeks. This would result in lost volumes of around 45,000-50,000 tonnes.
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The spot market responded with a deal on Wednesday at €212/tonne ($290/tonne) FOB (free on board) Rdam (Rotterdam) for March loading, up from deals at €205/tonne and €206/tonne just prior to news of the incident.
Whether or not the spike would continue or subside depended on the duration of the outage, and levels would likely stay stable until more details emerged, sources said.
“That’s the key question. People don’t know how long it will be out for; they are trying to assess the impact,” a trader said.
The force majeure at Mider Helm plant coincides with a turnaround at Shell’s 400,000 tonne/year plant at
($1 = €0.73)
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