The Maleic Anhydride markets are covered weekly by ICIS in Asia, Europe and the US. Our locally based reporters gather benchmark pricing assessments for both liquid and flake/molten material. Contracts are agreed in all three regions, while spot price updates are for Asia and Europe only.
The news and market intelligence that supports any price movements, gives details on demand, supply, regional updates, upstream activity, production news and any other influencing factors at the time of publication. This universally trusted insight ensures you have the information you need to make key strategic business decisions.
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Maleic anhydride news and market information products from ICIS
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Maleic anhydride: Market overview
Updated to Q1 2017
The first quarter may see a gradual uptrend in the maleic anhydride (MA) spot market on the back of higher feedstock butane prices. Saudi Aramco has issued its January contract prices for liquefied petroleum gases with prices of butane increasing $75/tonne to $495/tonne FOB Ras Tanura. Consequently, northeast Asian producers are increasing their selling indications into southeast Asia by $20-70/tonne. Demand in southeast Asia is expected to remain stable. In the US, MA producers are seeking price increases of between 4-5 cents/lb in January or February with demand expected to remain largely stable.
Over in Europe, spot prices are expected to firm amid limited supply and higher feedstock butane costs. First quarter price targets for some sellers are at plus €100-150/tonne. While buyers accept that there may be firmer numbers, it is suggested that €60-80/tonne is more realistic.
If the uptrend for butane costs continues, further price increase initiatives are likely in all markets.
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Maleic anhydride news & analysis
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Maleic Anhydride Methodology
About Maleic anhydride
Maleic anhydride (MA) occurs as colourless or white crystalline flakes with strong acrid (pungent) odour. It is soluble in acetone, ether, petroleum fractions and reacts with water, evolving heat and forming MA. It also dimerises to 1,2,3,4 -cyclobutane tetracarboxylic acid dianhydride in the presence of UV light.
MA is mostly used to make unsaturated polyester resins (UPRs). UPRs are used in a wide range of applications including bathroom fixtures and automobiles.
The second-largest outlet for MA is 1,4 butanediol (BDO) and derivatives tetrahydrofuran (THF) and gamma-butyrolactone (GBL).
MA is available as liquid (molten) or solid (flake): the liquid form dominates and accounts for 90-95% of the market, which is not easily transportable.
MA is produced commercially by the oxidation of benzene or butane. The butane-based process is considered to have superior economics and is the preferred route by most producers. However, a small amount is produced by the benzene route.