US etac may raise on acetic acid turnarounds - producer

21 March 2014 21:46  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS)--Acetic acid turnarounds could cause prices for US ethyl acetate (etac) to rise, a producer said on Friday.

Although etac has widely been considered globally oversupplied, upcoming turnarounds for US acetic acid could tighten that market, pushing the costs of etac up as well. Acetic acid is a feedstock for US etac.

US producers Celanese and Eastman Chemical have made separate 3-cent/lb ($66/tonne) price increase announcements for etac for 1 April. Buyers have expressed doubt if those increases will hold, as there is enough supply in the market.

But one market participant said that they are confident that the increases are justified.

“We still think there’s a reason for [the increases],” a producer said. “Raw materials have gone up. And ethanol has also increased the last few months.”

Four US acetic acid plants have scheduled maintenance turnarounds in April and May.

Celanese's 1.35m tonne unit in Clear Lake, Texas, will go down at the end of March or early April for three to four weeks of maintenance.

 Eastman Chemical's 277,000 tonne unit in Kingsport, Tennessee, and its 590,000 tonne plant in Texas City, Texas, have scheduled turnarounds during the same period.

LyondellBasell's 544,000 tonne unit in LaPorte, Texas, also will go down, sources said.

Major US etac suppliers are Eastman Chemical, Celanese and Solvay.

By: Andrew Guy Jr
+1 713 525 2653

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