Argentina’s July PE prices down for LDPE, LLDPE

05 July 2012 18:39  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS)--Argentina’s sole domestic polyethylene (PE) producer, Dow Chemical, is lowering the price for some grades in July to remain competitive with imports, reflecting also lower feedstock costs, a company source said on Thursday.

The decrease for low density PE (LDPE) prices is $100/tonne (€80/tonne), while linear low density PE (LLDPE) prices are being reduced by only $50/tonne.

High density PE (HDPE) prices will remain stable on diminished supply.

It remains to be seen how much of that discount will be passed along to transformers who buy from distributors.

Short supply of some grades has emboldened sellers to ask for higher prices.

Additionally, the dollar value used to calculate local prices is also being revised, making products more expensive in terms of local currency.

Shortages of natural gas have diminished local production of ethylene, and programmed maintenance has further reduced production of PE plastic resins, tightening the market.

Import restrictions have also played a role in tighter supply of PE, but import prices have been generally lower than domestic prices, thus pressuring prices down.

Prior to the July discount, LDPE prices in Argentina were in the range of $2,097-2,422/tonne DEL (delivered), while LLDPE prices were at $$1,954-2,342/tonne DEL. HDPE prices were at $1,945-2,210/tonne DEL.

Low temperatures are likely to prolong the shortages of natural gas to industrial users, as the government gives priority to home-heating uses of the fuel.

($1 = €0.80)

By: George Martin
+1 713 525 2653

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