03 October 2012 15:18 [Source: ICIS news]
LONDON (ICIS)--Sasol has commenced starting up its methyl ethyl ketone (MEK) plant in Moers, Germany, after previously declaring force majeure, the company's group media manager Alex Anderson confirmed on Wednesday.
The 65,000 tonne/year plant went into an unplanned shutdown on Monday 24 September.
The cause of the shutdown was attributed to technical issues which have since been rectified, Anderson said.
Weak macroeconomic conditions through Q3 have reduced end-user consumer confidence in the European MEK market, and players said that the shutdown was unlikely to impact product supply because demand for MEK is currently flat.
The impact the shutdown will have on MEK prices is yet to be seen.
“[Sasol’s] force majeure must impact prices,” a trader said on Friday. However, another distributor said that prices should remain stable as there is still a lot of material from other MEK producers available in the market.
MEK is widely used in the paints and coatings industry, as well as in rubber-based industrial cements and printing inks.
($1 = €0.77)
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