26 April 2013 17:25 [Source: ICIS news]
LONDON (ICIS)--European bisphenol A (BPA) freely-negotiated contract prices in May are likely to decline or roll over following the feedstock benzene settlement next week, sources said on Friday.
Benzene prices look set to increase but this is unlikely to have a major impact on BPA pricing because demand is poor and supply has stabilised after a spate of shortages in March and April.
It is likely that if benzene prices do not increase drastically, BPA prices could drop by about €30-40/tonne ($39-52/tonne) or roll over if the price of benzene rises. The price of benzene dropped by €62/tonne in April and part of this will be passed on in May.
According to buyers and traders, imports from Asia and Russia are on the rise, but this could not be backed up by trade data as statistical agency Eurostat's latest findings were only published for December 2012.
Import prices from Russia and Asia were assessed at €1,550-1,600/tonne delivered, duty paid (DDP). One buyer said it managed to secure 700 tonnes of BPA from Russia at €1,400/tonne DDP, but this was considered too low and was not included in the above range. The buyer said it got a discount because it paid upfront and bought a relatively large quantity.
The European market is said to be oversupplied and producers have been reducing output to cut overcapacity. Because of poor demand in Asia, Russian sellers have become aggressive in Europe, offering cut-price material.
($1 = €0.77)
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