US February chlor-alkali operating rate rises to 87%

14 March 2012 19:59  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS)--US chlor-alkali output was 87% of capacity in February, up from 86% in January, a US trade group said on Wednesday.

US chlor-alkali output in February was 938,614 tons (851,500 tonnes) of chlorine and 978,866 tons of caustic soda, the Chlorine Institute said.

Market sources said that the output numbers were not surprising, as producers in February were restocking inventories following the seasonal destocking at the end of 2011.

One source said many market participants are projecting that demand for polyvinyl chloride (PVC) may be flat in 2012 relative to the year before. The resin is one of the key downstream products in the vinyls change.

Major US chlor-alkali producers include Formosa Plastics USA, Georgia Gulf, Shintech, Occidental Chemical (OxyChem) and Westlake.

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By: Ken Fountain

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