APIC '13: S Korea's Sam Nam Yeosu PTA unit shut; to restart 12 May

10 May 2013 11:38  [Source: ICIS news]

TAIPEI (ICIS)--Sam Nam Petrochemical’s 350,000 tonne/year No 2 purified terephthalic acid (PTA) unit in Yeosu, South Korea, has been shut since 8 May because of a power failure at the site, a company source said on Friday.

The unit is expected to resume production on 12 May, the source said at the sidelines of the Asia Petrochemical Industry Conference (APIC), which is being held in Taipei on 9-10 May in Taipei.

The company’s three terephthalic acid (TA) units in Yeosu were taken off line on 8 May, two of which – the No 3 and No 4 qualified TA (QTA) units with 550,000 tonne/year capacity each – were restarted on the following day.

“The production loss for QTA is limited, but we expect the production loss for PTA to be around 3,000-4,000 tonnes,” the source said.

Sam Nam has a fourth terephthalic acid unit at the site –  a 350,000 tonne/year No 1 QTA unit – that was not operating when the power outage occurred, and the company has no plans to restart this unit because of poor margins, the source said.

Prior to the unexpected shutdown on 8 May, the No 2 PTA, No 3 and No 4 QTA units were running at around 85% of capacity, the source said.

The Yeosu power outage briefly affected the operations of GS Caltex, from which Sam Nam derives paraxylene (PX) feedstock for PTA production.

But PX availability was not an issue for Sam Nam, according to another company source.

“We have enough feedstock PX in our inventories, and do not need to purchase from the spot market,” he added.

Sam Nam is a joint venture between Japan’s Mitsubishi Chemical (40%) and South Korean companies Samyang Petrochemical (40%) and GS-Caltex Oil (20%).

Additional reporting by Samuel Wong

By: Becky Zhang
+65 6780 4359

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