11 March 2013 22:06 [Source: ICIS news]
MEXICO CITY (ICIS)--Demand from non-traditional export destinations is straining US caustic soda availability, a market source said on Monday.
Growing demand for US caustic soda from Africa, Australia and Europe, regions not considered conventional targets for US caustic, is placing upward pressure on prices, the source said on the sidelines of the 18th annual Plastimagen international plastics exposition and conference.
Earlier production problems in Brazil are additionally contributing to snug availability throughout the Americas. A November power outage in Brazil resulted in production problems at chlor-alkali plants, reducing supply and driving imports from the US and Peru.
Price increases of $30-50/dry short ton (dst) (€23-39/dst) announced by US producers remain under discussion. Suppliers have said the proposed hikes are driven by snug availability and steady demand.
Caustic soda consumption in key sectors is gauged as healthy, according to the source. Demand from the alumina industry is steady, while business from pulp and paper is assessed as stable. Caustic soda sales into soaps and detergents industries are expected to increase in line with population growth.
Plastimagen ends on Friday.
($1 = €0.77)
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