Mexico’s PE production hit by maintenance, feedstock shortage

28 August 2013 23:31  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS)--Programmed maintenance at Mexico’s Cangrejera cracker is having an impact on the maintenance schedule of the domestic polyethylene (PE) plants, reducing PE supply, a company source said on Wednesday.

The 650,000 tonne/year Cangrejera cracker stopped operations on 12 August for programmed maintenance that will last until 2 October, according to the work schedule.

There is ongoing maintenance on one of three low density polyethylene (LDPE) trains at the Cangrejera facility. The other two trains (100,000 tonnes/year each) are working normally, the source said.

The idled train 2 at the Cangrejera facility is scheduled to restart at the end of September.

Production shortages are also affecting the high density polyethylene (HDPE) plants. The two trains at the Asahi plant (100,000 tonnes/year) are currently down for maintenance, also as a result of ethylene shortages.

The 80,000 tonne/year Mitsui HDPE blow moulding plant is also down for maintenance, with its two production trains down.

All HDPE plants are getting a new extruder and are expected to resume production on 10 October.

Supply of linear low density polyethylene (LLDPE) has tightened because of recent maintenance.

The Morelos swing plant (HDPE/LLDPE) restarted only a few days ago and it is currently working normally, the source said.

However, this 300,000 tonne/year plant will go into scheduled maintenance on 9 September.

With the current ethylene shortages and scheduled maintenance procedures, domestic LLDPE and HDPE supply will be affected for a while. It is expected that imports will fill the gaps.

By: George Martin
+1 713 525 2653

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