Taiwan’s FPCC continues to shun naphtha spot buying

05 October 2012 04:20  [Source: ICIS news]

SINGAPORE (ICIS)--Taiwan’s Formosa Petrochemical Corp (FPCC) continues to shun spot buying of open-spec naphtha for delivery in the second half of November, given plans to maintain a reduced run rate of 80% at its crackers until the end of October, traders said on Friday.

FPCC’s absence in the spot market is likely to weigh on prices, they added.

The Asian naphtha crack spread lost 83 cents/tonne from Wednesday to a two-week low of $116/tonne (€89/tonne) against Brent crude futures on Thursday, according to ICIS data.

FPCC reduced the run rates at its three Mailiao-based crackers with a combined capacity of 2.93m tonnes/year to 80% from 100% on 27 September following an outage at a downstream monoethylene glycol (MEG) plant at the site.

The MEG plant is operated by FPCC’s sister company, Nan Ya Plastics.

FPCC previously bought by tender 30,000 tonnes of heavy naphtha for delivery to Mailiao in the first half of November – its first spot purchase since it bought June-delivery supplies.

However, FPCC cancelled a separate tender to buy open-spec naphtha on the back of reduced cracker run rates.

The company operates a 700,000 tonne/year No 1 cracker, a 1.03m tonne/year No 2 cracker and a 1.2m tonne/year No 3 cracker in Mailiao.

By: Felicia Loo

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