US Eastman schedules October maintenance at Tennessee unit

12 September 2011 23:47  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS)--Eastman Chemical has scheduled an October shutdown of its coal gasification facility in Kingsport, Tennessee, the company said on Monday.

A spokeswoman for Eastman did not say how long the maintenance would last at the facility, which includes a 255,000 tonne/year acetic acid unit.

But sources in the acetic acid market estimated the Eastman turnaround was scheduled for three weeks.

A market source said LyondellBasell Acetyls and Celanese also had turnarounds scheduled at their respective Texas acetic acid plants soon.

Celanese would not comment on whether it planned a turnaround, while LyondellBasell did not respond immediately to a phone call.

Meanwhile, BP did not have a planned shutdown scheduled at a 590,000/tonne acetic acid unit in Texas City, a source close to the company said, adding, “I think we’re about the only one who doesn’t."

BP operates the Texas City plant, but it is owned by Eastman.

Eastman Chemical bought that plant in August from Sterling Chemicals for $100m (€73m). But the technology is owned by BP, which had a long-term production agreement there prior to the acquisition.

Most sources said the current US acetic acid FOB (free on board) export price was $640-660/tonne. One source said there was a drop in spot prices to $595-615/tonne, but it could not be confirmed.

($1 = €0.73)

For more on acetic acid,  visit ICIS chemical intelligence

By: Lane Kelley
+1 713 525 2653

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