China’s TSRC-UBE to shut down BR plant in Feb on poor margins

18 January 2013 02:53  [Source: ICIS news]

SINGAPORE (ICIS)--China’s TSRC-UBE (Nantong) Chemical Industrial will shut down its 72,000 tonne/year butadiene rubber (BR) plant in February for maintenance because of eroded margins and weak market conditions, a company source said on Friday.

“We will shut down the BR plant for one month for maintenance as demand for BR is poor,” the source added.

The plant,located at Nantong in Jiangsu province,  is a joint venture between Taiwan Synthetic Rubber Corp (TSRC), which owns a 55% stake, and Japanese firms Ube Industries (25%) and Marubeni (20%).

BR spot prices rose to $2,400-2,500/tonne (€1,800-1,875/tonne) CFR (cost and freight) northeast (NE) Asia on 17 January, up by $50/tonne from the previous week, ICIS data showed.

However, BR producers said their margins have been eroded due to the surge in the feedstock butadiene (BD) prices.

Feedstock BD offers have surged to more than $1,800/tonne CFR NE Asia for early February shipments, up by $150/tonne since early January, industry sources said.

BR producers said they need a spread of $700-800/tonne to break even.

In the week ended 4 January, feedstock BD prices were at $1,630-1,670/tonne CFR NE Asia, ICIS data showed.

($1 = €0.75)

By: Helen Yan
+65 6780 4359

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