China’s BYACO suspends acetic acid supply on Nanjing plant outage

14 September 2012 05:33  [Source: ICIS news]

SINGAPORE (ICIS)--China’s BP YPC Acetyls Co (BYACO) has declared force majeure on supply from its 500,000 tonne/year acetic acid plant in Nanjing, Jiangsu province on 7 September, sources close to the company said on Friday.

The force majeure was declared in a letter to customers following a plant outage on 3 September because of a shortage of feedstock carbon monoxide supply, according to the sources.

Company officials were unable to comment on plant operations.

The acetic acid plant was previously taken off line on 1 August in line with the maintenance shutdown schedule of the upstream carbon monoxide unit and resumed operations on 26 August.

However, the plant had to be shut again on 3 September following a technical problem at the upstream carbon monoxide unit, sources added. Operations at the acetic acid plant were expected to resume on 21 September.

Sources said the company has no allocations for their customers pending the restart and stable operations of the acetic acid plant.

They added that the acetic acid plant was operating at 80-90% of capacity prior to the shutdown on 1 August.

The plant can produce up to 550,000 tonnes/year of acetic acid when it operates at full capacity, sources said.

Chinese domestic acetic acid prices rose yuan (CNY) 50/tonne ($8/tonne) to CNY 3,050-3,300/tonne ex-tank in eastern China in the week as a result, amid heightened supply concerns following several acetic acid production issues in a previously oversupplied market, according to market participants.

BYACO is a 50/50 joint venture between BP and Sinopec.

Major acetic acid producers in China include Celanese, BP, Jiangsu Sopo, Shanghai Wujing Chemical, Henan Shunda and Yankuang Cathay.

($1 = CNY 6.33)

By: Helen Lee
+65 6780 4359

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