16 May 2013 11:58 [Source: ICIS news]
LONDON (ICIS)--German refiner PCK has declared force majeure on propylene supplies because of a further delay in bringing its fluid catalytic cracker (FCC) back online following planned maintenance, sources said on Thursday.
The FCC is now expected to be back in operation at the end of the month – around 25-26 May or 28-29 May – depending on source.
The reason for the delay was said to be an “unforeseen issue causing overheating in the catalyst section of the FCC unit which occurred during the start up of the FCC unit”, according to a source.
The FCC, which has the capacity to produce 250,000 tonnes/year of propylene, according to ICIS data, was taken offline in early April as part of a €160m ($205m) modernisation and maintenance project.
The work was expected to be completed on 3 May.
PCK's FCC is key to the inland German market and supply has tightened as a result. Some buyers faced with the only option of securing alternatives from further afield have been forced to pay spot prices around 6-7% higher than the prevailing May contract price.
PCK shareholders include Shell, BP, Rosneft, ENI and Total.
($1 = €0.78)
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