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Maleic anhydride Europe Transcript
Maleic anhydride or MA has two feedstocks n-butane and benzene. In Europe plants are predominantly based on n-butane, but outside of Europe, the main feedstock is benzene.
MA is used in a wide variety of applications, but its major use is in the unsaturated polyester resins market. That accounts for over 50% of all MA usage. UPRs are use in construction, automotive and marine applications.
The key price drivers for MA are supply and demand and feedstock costs.
Maleic anhydride is imported but not in large quantities. Solid imports from Asia are the most common. Liquid imports are rare, because solid temperature controls make shipping logistically difficult. However, some liquid material does enter the European market from America.
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Updated to Q2 2016
The European maleic anhydride (MA) Q2 contract price was agreed at a small increase of €30/tonne from first-quarter levels.
Producers’ bullish targets of increases of up to €100/tonne were met with resistance from buyers looking for stable to even lower prices.
A consensus has largely been reached at a small increase, but settlements at different levels were reported as well.
Prices increased on the back of higher production costs and the market entering in its peak season in Q2. Producers also justified their targets with thin margins following sharp price drops in the previous quarters.
The contract price has been assessed at €1,430-1, 480/tonne FD NWE. The range is reported on a pre-discounted basis.
Spot prices were relatively stable and as of 24 June were assessed at €960-1020/tonne FD NWE for flake and €1060-1100/tonne FD NWE for liquid MA.
Demand has been good with spring being the peak season for the market.
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