20 August 2013 16:55 [Source: ICIS news]
LONDON (ICIS)--Algerian state-owned energy group Sonatrach plans to shut the condensate splitter unit at its 335,000 bbl/day Skikda refinery for maintenance, industry sources said on Tuesday.
The shutdown is expected to last one month from mid-September. "The Skikda splitter will be down one month from mid September," a naphtha trader said.
Sonatrach was not immediately available for comment.
The condensate splitter mainly produces naphtha. A second naphtha trader estimated Sonatrach exports around 200,000 tonnes of naphtha from the site per month.
The market is split over the impact the shutdown will have on the European naphtha sector. Some sources maintain the planned shutdown is one of the factors behind the strong naphtha crack spread.
The September naphtha crack spread strengthened from minus $8.00/bbl on Monday 5 August to minus $6.80/bbl late on Tuesday morning.
A crack spread is the price difference between crude oil and naphtha, calculated in US dollars per barrel.
($1 = €0.75)
Follow Cuckoo James on Twitter
For the latest chemical news, data and analysis that directly impacts your business sign up for a free trial to ICIS news - the breaking online news service for the global chemical industry.
Get the facts and analysis behind the headlines from our market leading weekly magazine: sign up to a free trial to ICIS Chemical Business.
|ICIS news FREE TRIAL|
|Get access to breaking chemical news as it happens.|
|ICIS Global Petrochemical Index (IPEX)|
|ICIS Global Petrochemical Index (IPEX). Download the free tabular data and a chart of the historical index|
Asian Chemical Connections