SABIC shuts 300,000 t/yr MTBE plant in Saudi Arabia on outage

03 September 2010 06:16  [Source: ICIS news]

SINGAPORE (ICIS)--Petrochemical giant Saudi Basic Industries Corp (SABIC) has taken off line the smallest of its three methyl tertiary butyl ether (MTBE) plants at Al-Jubail, Saudi Arabia, following an outage, industry sources said on Thursday.

The 300,000 tonne/year MTBE plant has been shut down since early this week, sources said.

SABIC could not be immediately reached for comment.

The company runs two other MTBE plants at the same site, with capacities of 1m tonnes/year and 700,000/tonnes/year, the sources said.

As a result, SABIC reduced its spot MTBE supply in Asia, cutting its shipments from about 10 cargoes to six this month, the sources added.

Tighter supply has underpinned MTBE prices in Singapore, which held firm at a premium of $20/tonne (€16/tonne) to market quotes on a delivered basis, market players said.

The affected MTBE plant was last shut for scheduled maintenance early this year.

($1 = €0.78)

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By: Felicia Loo

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