Styron places order stop on Europe HIPS because of high demand

11 July 2013 17:10  [Source: ICIS news]

LONDON (ICIS)--Styron has placed an order stop on its European high impact polystyrene (HIPS) supplies because of very high demand this month, an official at the US-headquartered polystyrene (PS) producer said on Thursday.

Earlier in the day, the Styron executive said the company was considering such a measure on at least some grades of HIPS, before announcing the order stop a few hours later.

The executive said it had taken this step "in order to manage our production and inventories to meet the very high demand we have this month for HIPS."

The executive went on to say: "Regular orders will continue to be managed but [we] will have little or no availability for new, unplanned business."

Producers have reported healthy levels of demand since the beginning of July, with some expressing surprise at the volume of orders and enquiries. They have offered various possible explanations, including limitations on supply.

Production of HIPS at the Styrolution plant in Wingles, France, was interrupted by a maintenance shutdown in June. Although the turnaround had been scheduled, the plant was around 10 days late in coming back up.

While this may have contributed to an overall shortage of HIPS in Europe, sources believe other producers are also tight on a number of grades.

A converter in the UK said on Thursday it had received a lot of offers of cheap, general-purpose polystyrene (GPPS) but the necessity of paying at least some of the fee upfront, together with a 6-week delivery time from east Asia, reduced the appeal of this material.

($1 = €0.78)

By: Peter Gerrard
+44 208 652 3214

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