Trinidad ammonia makers face another month of natgas cuts

09 May 2012 19:19  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS)--Ammonia and other chemical producers in Trinidad and Tobago are operating at reduced rates because of a 20% curtailment in natural gas deliveries from the National Gas Co (NGC), sources said on Wednesday.

Ammonia producers at the Point Lisas Industrial Estate were notified that a 20% curtailment in natural gas deliveries to chemical plants would be enforced by NGC for the month of May, a source said.

Currently, 11 ammonia plants operated by six companies at Point Lisas have a total capacity to produce 5.67m tonnes/year.

A 20% reduction in the delivery of natural gas to the ammonia plants translates to a monthly production loss of about 94,500 tonnes.

The reduced ammonia production in Trinidad limits the amount of ammonia available for export to the US Gulf, where supply is already tight because of strong seasonal agricultural demand, a source said.

Further constricting the supply of natural gas in Trinidad is the restart this week of the Methanol Holdings (Trinidad) Ltd's (MHTL) M5000 1.9m tonne/year methanol plant that went down for maintenance about 10 April.

Natural gas curtailments have occurred on an almost monthly basis since February 2011 when, according to NGC, supplies became limited from BP, the supplier of 80% of the natural gas consumed in Trinidad.

By: Frank Zaworski
+1 713 525 2653

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