INEOS declares FM on LDPE from Cologne, Germany

28 January 2011 14:57  [Source: ICIS news]

LONDON (ICIS)--INEOS has declared force majeure on deliveries of low density polyethylene (LDPE) from its Cologne site in Germany, after its 240,000 tonne/year autoclave line failed due to a mechanical issue, a company source said on Friday.

“The autoclave line went down on Wednesday [26 January] and we don’t expect it to be back up before mid-February,” said the source.

INEOS has two LDPE reactors at Cologne, with a combined capacity of 360,000 tonnes/year. The remaining line was running normally.

LDPE availability has been restricted in recent months because of production problems and a series of shutdowns, mainly of high-cost autoclave plants, in 2009.

Polimeri Europa’s 200,000 tonne/year LDPE unit in Dunkirk, France, was only just coming back on line after being brought down for a two-month maintenance outage in August 2010.

LDPE prices rose by €110/tonne ($151/tonne) in January. Producers were now looking to increase prices again in February, by €25-80/tonne.

Buyers did not see the possibility of a large increase in February, but discussions had not yet got under way.

The LDPE net price range is currently at €1,420-1,450/tonne FD (free delivered) NWE (northwest Europe).

LDPE is used mainly for film and coating applications in the packaging and agricultural industries.

($1 = €0.73)

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By: Linda Naylor
+44 20 8652 3214

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