EPCA '13: Excess US naphtha may increasingly go to Canada

06 October 2013 11:30  [Source: ICIS news]

BERLIN (ICIS)--Future excess US naphtha production will be sent more and more to the north to Canada instead of being sent overseas, a consultant with ICIS said on Sunday.

“I believe a big part of that will not go to international markets but will be more directed to Canada to help and contribute to the production of heavy crude oil,” said Stefano Zehnder, during a presentation at the 47th annual European Petrochemical Association (EPCA) annual meeting.

With the advent of shale gas in the US, naphtha’s competitiveness as a feedstock for olefins has been hurt dramatically, with the current margin difference between ethane cracking and naphtha cracker at more than 30 cents/lb.

While US refiners have been shipping naphtha to overseas markets, Zehnder believes more of the product will be sent northward to Canada to be used as a solvent to allow that country’s heavy crudes to be transported easier to refiners in North America.

The EPCA meeting runs from 5-9 October.

By: Jeremy Pafford
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