12 August 2013 08:58 [Source: ICIS news]
MELBOURNE (ICIS)--China’s Zhenjiang LCY General Chemical has restarted its 24,000 tonne/year methyl isobutyl ketone (MIBK) plant in Jiangsu province after keeping it off line for close to two months, market sources familiar with the matter said on Monday.
The plant, which was previously scheduled to restart in early July, was restarted over the weekend of 10-11 August, the sources said.
Weak market conditions had prompted the producer to postpone the resumption of MIBK production following a scheduled maintenance, the sources said.
The yuan-denominated domestic MIBK prices in China have slumped by close to 22% since December 2012 to yuan (CNY) 13,100-13,300/tonne ($2,141-2,173/tonne) ex-works/ex-tank by early August 2013, data collated by ICIS showed.
The price decline was spurred by the surge in spot imports, which crimped demand for locally-produced MIBK.
China’s MIBK imports between January and June 2013 have exceeded the total volumes purchased in 2012, according to Chinese importers, citing the nation’s customs data.
Chinese buyers purchased 27,347 tonnes of MIBK in the first six months of 2013, an increase of 13,770 tonnes from the same period last year, the importers said.
Zhenjiang LCY is a subsidiary of Taiwanese company LCY Chemical, which also operates a 20,000 tonne/year MIBK plant at Linyuan in Taiwan.
($1 = CNY6.12)
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