10 January 2014 09:16 [Source: ICIS news]
SINGAPORE (ICIS)--Asia will move nearly 50,000 tonnes of benzene into the US in January, with bulk of the volume to be shipped out in the second half of the month, when more vessels are available to make the shipment, market players said on Friday.
About 27,000 tonnes of South Korean cargoes will move to the US from the second-half of January, they said.
Some 3,000 tonnes or more that were initially due for February loading would instead be shipped out to the US by the end of this month, they added.
“About 30,000 tonnes in total will head to the US for January,” a major South Korean producer said.
Tight availability of vessels had earlier dissuaded South Korean producers to make the shipments to the US despite the wide open arbitrage window, market players said.
From Japan, 6,000 tonnes out of close to 20,000 tonnes of estimated shipment to the US has been confirmed month was confirmed.
The arbitrage window from Asia to the US has been open since December, with US FOB Gulf benzene prices higher by $120/tonne compared with FOB Korea values on 9 January, according to ICIS data.
Freight rates from South Korea and Japan to the US are estimated at about $55-60/tonne for a 15,000-tonne vessel.
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