Corrected: BP’s Gelsenkirchen methanol plant begins restart after delay

08 July 2011 12:04  [Source: ICIS news]

Correction: In the ICIS story headlined "BP's Gelsenkirchen methanol plant running after delayed restart" dated 8 July 2011, please read in the headline "...begins restart after delay" instead of ..."running after delayed restart." Also, in the first paragraph, please read in the process of restarting... instead of ...became fully operational on 7 July.... A corrected story follows.

LONDON (ICIS)--BP’s 300,000 tonne/year methanol plant at Gelsenkirchen, Germany,  is in the process of restarting after delays, a company source said on Friday.

The plant was taken offline in early May for maintenance and was scheduled to start up again in mid-June. However, attempts to resume production met with delays for unspecified technical reasons.

“They tried to start it three weeks ago … the exact reason [for the delay] I don’t really know,” said the source.

Market sources held the delay at least partially responsible for a slight rally in methanol prices this week. Deals were done at €253.50-258.00/tonne ($362-369/tonne) FOB (free on board) Rotterdam compared with prices last week of €249-253/tonne.

Other firming factors are the strength of the southeast Asia market and recent shutdowns of the 1.7m tonne/year Ar-Razi 5 plant in Al Jubail, Saudi Arabia and the 1.65m tonne/year Zagros II plant in Asaluyeh, Iran.

Two unplanned outages occurred recently in southeast Asia: the 850,000 tonne/year Brunei Methanol plant at Sungai Liang Industrial Park in Brunei, which has since been restarted, and Petronas’ 1.7m tonne/year No2 plant in Labuan, Sabeh, which remains offline.

Prices in the region are assessed at $385-395/tonne CFR SE Asia.

($1 = €0.70)

By: Ross Yeo
+44 208 652 3214

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