Kenya caustic soda demand to pick up after elections – sources

28 February 2013 12:59  [Source: ICIS news]

LONDON (ICIS)--Caustic soda demand could pick up in Kenya after the presidential and general elections on 4 March, sources said on Thursday.

"Orders for March delivery are up about 15-20% [on February], and I think this is because people are planning to produce more after the elections," a producer in India said.

Market players said that demand was subdued during February, mainly because buyers in eastern Africa reduced purchases as a result of uncertainty preceding the elections.

After the last elections in 2007 widespread violence ensued between party followers that resulted in thousands of deaths. As nobody can be sure there will not be a repeat of this, most players have reduced output and have been waiting to see what happens after the voting.

"I think demand will pick up because players will return to the market and ramp up production," a caustic soda buyer said.

A trader added: "If all goes well after the elections, then demand will pick up, already bookings are up for after the elections."

Solid caustic soda prices in Kenya are at $580-625/tonne (€441-475/tonne) cost and freight (CFR) Kenya, while liquid caustic soda is $600-610/dmt CFR Kenya.

($1 = €0.76) 

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By: Janos Gal
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