Atlas methanol plant in Trinidad to restart mid-August

08 August 2011 17:02  [Source: ICIS news]

LONDON (ICIS)--The Methanex-owned Atlas Methanol plant in Trinidad will restart in mid-August following an unexpected shutdown during the week ended 22 July, a source said on Monday.

A scheduled month-long turnaround for the 1.7m tonne/year plant, which was planned for September, will now be postponed until the end of this year or early 2012, the source added.

Market players had speculated that the turnaround could be brought forward because of the recent outage. Concerns of possible extended downtime contributed to recent bullish sentiment which pushed European spot prices up to €284/tonne ($406/tonne) FOB (free on board) Rotterdam on 4 August.

Prices quickly dropped the following afternoon by €11/tonne which several participants attributed to the news regarding the delayed date of the turnaround.

However, this sentiment was not shared by all, with many convinced the price drop was the result of heavy selling by two players who were either unloading excess stock or had been spooked by the stock market losses.

Others said various factors had combined to produce a high level of uncertainty in the market which was behind the turbulent prices.

On Monday afternoon the market was quiet, with bids and offers wide at €268-278/tonne for September material.

($1 = €0.70)

Additional reporting by Lane Kelley


By: Ross Yeo
+44 208 652 3214



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