14 November 2013 11:22 [Source: ICIS news]
LONDON (ICIS)--LyondellBasell has declared force majeure on polypropylene (PP) from its Carrington, UK, plant after it failed to restart following a planned maintenance shutdown, the company said in a letter sent to buyers dated 13 November, and seen by ICIS on Thursday.
The company was not immediately available for comment.
Buyers had expected the 210,000 tonne/year PP plant to be back onstream last week, after a shutdown that began in mid-September.
“We have been told it should be back up by the weekend,” said one buyer.
“I don’t expect it to be a major issue,” said another. “We buy from them but I’m not panicking.”
Several sources said that LyondellBasell had not been supplying material outside of contractual business for some time as a series of minor production issues and propylene supply problems affected the company’s availability. This was not confirmed by the company, however, as it declines to comment on the status of its plants.
This force majeure comes at a time when low-priced spot prices are disappearing from the market as production cutbacks at the cracker are affecting propylene availability.
There are two PP production sites in the UK, including LyondellBasell’s Carrington site. The other is INEOS’s 285,000 tonne/year plant at Grangemouth in Scotland, which is still thought not to be fully back up after a recent high-profile closure.
Most homopolymer prices are now heard at a minimum of €1,200/tonne ($1,622/tonne) FD (free delivered) NWE (northwest Europe) on a net basis.
($1 = €0.74)
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