Celanese resumes Nanjing acetic acid production at 80% capacity

23 March 2011 05:51  [Source: ICIS news]

SINGAPORE (ICIS)--Global acetyls producer Celanese has restarted operations at its 1.2m tonne/year acetic acid facility at Nanjing in China, market sources close to the company said on Wednesday.

The plant was restarted on 17 or 18 March and is currently running at 80% capacity, sources said.

The complex, which includes a 300,000 tonne/year vinyl acetate monomer (VAM) plant, was taken off line on 2 March following “unexpected production disruptions”, which prompted the company to declare force majeure (FM) on Nanjing acetyls supplies on 3 March.

When asked about the current production status of the Nanjing complex, a Celanese spokesperson said, “Celanese does not comment on the operational status of our manufacturing facilities.”

A regional acetic acid producer said the plant was restarted around 17 or 18 March.

A separate source added, “A client told me that [the] acetic acid plant is running at 80% of capacity, but the force majeure and 40% allocation remains in place.”

Market sources also said that the company’s 300,000 tonne/year VAM plant will remain shut until the stability of the acetic acid plant production is established.

Meanwhile, domestic acetic acid prices in the eastern region were holding steady at yuan (CNY) 3,300-3,500/tonne ($504-534/tonne) ex-tank this week, holding on to a CNY250-400/tonne gain over late February levels because of supply shortages, according to ICIS data.

Major acetic acid producers in China include BP, Jiangsu Sopo, Shanghai Wujing, Yankuang Cathay Coal Chemicals, Henan ShunDa Chemical and Hebei Chung Shun Chemical.

($1 = CNY6.55)

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By: Helen Lee
+65 6780 4359

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