Power outage hits Al-Jubail plants

By Malini Hariharan

A power outage at Al-Jubail has forced crackers and downstream plants at Al-Jubail, Saudi Arabia, to shut down. ICIS news reports that all polyethylene (PE) and polypropylene (PP) plants at the site were shut yesterday. It is not yet clear which other derivative plants were affected.

LyondellBasell has temporarily withdrawn its February offers for southeast Asia, India, China, the Middle East and Africa, reports Sheau Ling, the ICIS pricing editor for South Asia and the Middle East. LyondellBasell is a joint-venture partner in four PE and PP plants in Al-Jubail.

A source close to the company says the offers have been withdrawn for a couple of days until it has a clearer picture of the situation at the site. Plants are being restarted but it could take a few days for normal operations to resume.

Sabic, which runs a number of plants at the site, has yet to confirm the full impact on its operations.

Market players expect prices to rise in the coming weeks, reports Bee Lin Chow on ICIS news.

Film grade PE offers are expected to rise by at least $20-30 in the coming weeks if the Al-Jubail plants do not resume production soon.

But whether these offers will be acceptable to buyers will be known only after China returns from the Lunar New Year holidays.

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