Trinidad natural gas cutback could stretch through April

13 April 2011 22:28  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS)--A two-month natural gas cutback in Trinidad that has reduced production for methanol and ammonia producers could extend to the end of April, market sources said on Wednesday.

A methanol source said the curtailment by National Gas that began in mid-February should be over by the end of this week.

But another source said natural gas deliveries to ammonia plants in Point Lisas were not expected to resume normal levels until the end of April.

The source said ammonia plants have increased production in recent weeks at the Point Lisas Industrial Estate, which includes manufacturers of ammonia, urea, methanol and petrochemicals.

Ammonia production fell back to 75% of capacity when the reduction was announced but has increased to 90% now, the ammonia source said.

Methanol sources have said throughout the curtailment that it would have only minimal impact. Spot methanol prices rose steadily from an average of 103 cents/gal after the first announcement and reached a high of 114 cents/gal in early March.

Since then, spot values have tailed off, ranging around 106-107 cents/gal on Wednesday.

For more on methanol and ammonia,  visit ICIS chemical intelligence  

Additional reporting by Frank Zaworski

By: Lane Kelley
+1 713 525 2653

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