China’s PE import activity slows down on wide buy-sell gap

18 August 2010 05:35  [Source: ICIS news]

SINGAPORE (ICIS)--China’s polyethylene (PE) import activities have slowed to a trickle this week due to a wide gap in buy and sell ideas for September shipments - as much as $50/tonne (€39/tonne) for different grades - buyers and sellers said on Wednesday.

Offers of Korean film grade linear low density PE (LLDPE) and high density PE (HDPE) were cited at $1,220/tonne and $1,200/tonne, all on a CFR (cost and freight) China basis for September shipment.

However, buying ideas for LLDPE and HDPE were below $1,200/tonne CFR China and $1,150/tonne CFR China, respectively, local importers said.

Chinese buyers were hoping to import at prices that were close to the current retail value of imported material so as to minimise risks associated with price volatility, a key trader in east China said.

Imported LLDPE was selling at retail prices of up to yuan (CNY) 10,000/tonne ($1,468/tonne) ex-warehouse in eastern China, which gives an import parity of around $1,160/tonne CFR China, he said.

Wild price swings over the past few months had made importers more cautious in taking forward positions, a trader in south China said.

The average weekly import prices for film grade LLDPE and HDPE on a CFR China basis had plunged to low of $1,060/tonne and $1,025/tonne this year, for the week ended 9 July, respectively, according to ICIS data.

These were 26% and 23% lower than this year’s high of $1,430/tonne CFR China and $1,330/tonne CFR China registered in the week ended 22 January, ICIS data showed.

The average weekly import prices for film grade LLDPE and HDPE were at $1,175/tonne CFR China and $1,125/tonne CFR China for the week ended 13 August, the data showed.

($1 = CNY6.81/ $1 = €0.78)

PE price graph

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By: Chow Bee Lin
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