The ICIS Ethyl Acetate reports are published in Asia, Europe and the US on a weekly basis.
All regions cover the spot market, while in the US there is also a distributor price assessment. The independent pricing information is gathered locally by our network of reporters. Commentary and analysis covers regional activity, upstream news, production updates and graphs, ensuring you are equipped with the latest market movements when making your commercial judgements.
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Ethyl acetate: Market overview
Updated to Q4 2017
In Asia, supply in key exporting market China will likely be balanced to tight. Some producers, including those that regularly export, were heard operating at higher rates. Supply for feedstock acetic acid and ethanol was expected to remain snug and thus costs of making etac were expected to be high in Q4 2017. With good demand and higher prices domestically in China, Chinese suppliers may allocate less supply for the export market, or target higher export prices. However, with a southeast Asian producer planning a turnaround at the end of quarter four, supply in southeast may turn tight towards year-end.
With Q4 being traditionally a peak season for etac in certain Asian countries including China, China domestic demand for etac is expected to increase. Also, buyers may stock up as they expect feedstock prices to continue to rise. However, in some countries in Asia, demand is less influenced by seasonal factors and will likely remain stable in Q4.
Supply of ethyl acetate (etac) is likely to remain balanced during the fourth quarter. A 100,000 tonnes/year expansion of INEOS’ plant in Hull, the UK, is scheduled to be completed during the quarter, though a source said it expected the full capacity increase to come on stream in early 2018.
Sipchem switched from producing etac to butyl acetate (butac) at its plant in Jubail, Saudi Arabia, in early October, according to market sources. Some sources said this would cause European supply to tighten, though generally sources said that this would not have a significant impact on the market.
Demand for etac will most likely remain healthy during October and November, having risen from the low levels experienced during the summer holiday season.
However, in early October some sources said that demand continued to be limited by relatively high prices.
The market will become quieter in December, in advance of the Christmas holidays.
Supply will remain tight for a part of Q4 as production of etac and its feedstocks gets back to normal in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey over the course of several weeks. Supply levels should normalize for the rest of the quarter. Also, slower demand during the off-peak season will remove some supply pressure.
For a part of Q4, demand will be strong for the limited amount of material on hand in the aftermath of Hurricane Harvey. But overall, demand will decrease through the quarter as it will be the off-peak season for the downstream markets.
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Ethyl Acetate Methodology
About Ethyl acetate
Ethyl acetate (etac) is a colourless, mobile, volatile liquid, with a characteristic pleasant fruity odour. It is highly flammable, soluble in ethyl alcohol and ether but slightly soluble in water.
It is used in a variety of coating formulations such as epoxies, urethanes, cellulosics, acrylics and vinyls. Applications for these coatings are numerous including wood furniture and fixtures, agricultural, construction and mining equipment, auto refinishing, and maintenance and marine uses.
Ethyl acetate has applications as a solvent in inks for flexographic and rotogravure printing. It is used as an extraction solvent in the production of pharmaceuticals and food, and as a carrier solvent for herbicides. High purity product can be used as a viscosity reducer for resins used in photoresist formulations in the electronics industry.
As an active solvent, etac is available in three grades: 85-88%, 99% and 99.5% (urethane grade). The most popular is 99% grade which is chiefly used in industrial lacquers and enamels.
Miscellaneous uses of etac include adhesives and cosmetics.