Our weekly Melamine reports are published for Asia, Europe and the US. Price assessments gathered by our locally based reporters cover spot business in Asia, contract and spot in Europe, and contract only in the US.
The market analysis in the commentary section offers overviews of regional activity, upstream news, production updates, graphs, and any other key factors influencing prices. This independent market intelligence can assist you in making those crucial commercial choices with confidence.
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Melamine news and market information products from ICIS
We offer the following regional Melamine analysis and news coverage to keep you informed of factors and developments affecting prices in the Melamine marketplace.
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Melamine: Market overview
Updated to Q4 2016
Asia melamine prices are likely to stay volatile in Q4 amid uncertain supply conditions. Supply from Chinese producers has been unstable, resulting in price fluctuations extending to Q4. With environmental inspections ongoing, it will take some time before supply and demand rebalances in the region.
Q4 contract negotiations in the European melamine market are ongoing, with the majority of contracts so far settling at a rollover. Demand for October and November is expected to remain solid. This will start to soften in December, with a number of businesses closing in the second half of the month for the holidays. Supply in the market is balanced, with producers expected to have the opportunity to build up inventories later in the quarter as demand drops.
Q4 prices in the US melamine market were still in the process of settling in October. It appeared that prices for domestic and imported melamine were settling between a rollover from Q3, and an increase of one cent/lb. Melamine exports in Q4 will remain low, and imports will be higher than normal.
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Melamine news & analysis
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Melamine was originally manufactured by heating dicyandiamide under pressure. Currently, melamine is produced by the decomposition of urea into cyanic acid and ammonia in an endothermic reaction. Cyanic acid is then polymerised to form melamine and carbon dioxide.
Its most important reaction is that with formaldehyde, forming resinous compounds of high molecular weight. The construction and automotive industries figure high in driving melamine growth. Container and coil coatings, laminates and flame retardant uses have all experienced growth in recent years.
Melamine is used in the production of moulding powder to make dinner ware, coatings in cars, fan coils and appliances. Other uses include adhesive resins, which are used in the making of wood panels for the construction of kitchens, bathrooms, furniture and flooring. Melamine is produced by heating urea, ammonia (NH3) and carbon monoxide, of which the resulting mixture of isocyanic and ammonia reacts over a solid catalyst at about 400ºC.
Melamine is moderately toxic by ingestion and a skin and eye irritant.