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Updated to Q2 2016
Second-quarter contracts in the European polymethyl methacrylate (PMMA) market settled at a decrease, with Asian imports driving down prices.
It was the pressure from Asian imports that weighed on prices for standard grade material.
Some buyers and sellers said at times that Asian material has been offered over €100/tonne lower than European product. A large amount of this product was thought to be originating from South Korea.
One producer said it thinks the developments in technology have resulted in a South Korean producer being left with excess PMMA, with television screens getting thinner.
However, there was a growing sentiment in the European PMMA market that a potential shift in dynamics could be approaching, initiated by increasing upstream methyl methacrylate (MMA) prices in Asia.
Given the increasing upstream MMA prices in Asia, there was a sentiment throughout the second quarter that less MMA would be polymerised into PMMA, leading to a reduction of stocks and then imports.
There continues to be an abundance of supply in Europe, however, market players are starting to look to upstream MMA prices, with upward pricing pressure in that market.
Demand remains stable to firm and remained at this level for most of the quarter.
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