Black Sea ammonia prices slip to $445/tonne FOB for July loading

27 June 2013 13:29  [Source: ICIS news]

LONDON (ICIS)--The benchmark Black Sea ammonia price fell for the second consecutive month on Thursday after Nitrochem confirmed it sold a 20,000-tonne cargo at a price that nets back to $445/tonne (€343/tonne) FOB (free on board) for July loading in Yuzhny.

The cargo will load on the Gas Manta or Gas Grouper in the Ukrainian port in early July for discharge at Ceyhan and Samsun in Turkey for fertilizer group Toros.

Market sources suggest US firm Koch this week purchased 40,000 tonnes at $450/tonne FOB Yuzhny from major producer NF Trading, but neither company could be reached for comment today. The cargo is scheduled to load on the Clipper Neptun in mid-July.

Softening demand from agricultural users in the US and industrial buyers in Asia-Pacific has placed severe downward pressure on ammonia prices in recent weeks, with the key Yuzhny price falling to $460-470/tonne FOB for June loadings from $505-515/tonne FOB for May shipments.

Norwegian fertilizer giant Yara this week settled the July Tampa price with its customers at $525/tonne CFR – down by $40/tonne on June – to reflect the downward price trend in the Black Sea and Arabian Gulf.

Ammonia prices have fallen sharply throughout the first half of 2013, sliding from $650/tonne FOB Yuzhny and $720/tonne CFR Tampa in October 2012.

In a bid to force a floor and underpin higher prices, NF Trading is understood to be planning to reduce ammonia production at its units in eastern Europe by 50% in July.

($1 = €0.77)

By: Richard Ewing
+44 208 652 3214

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