ICIS price reporting for regional Ammonia markets is unparalleled in its ability to keep you on top of the information you need.
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Updated to Q3 2019
Market participants are keeping a close eye on increasing political tension in the Middle East amid a hike in war premiums and insurance payments that have bumped up freight rates. While some chemicals producers have already looked at alternative arrangements to move material from the region, no such cost-effective option is in place for ammonia should shipping routes suffer major disruption. No scheduled or unplanned shutdowns are heard from Ma’aden, SABIC, or QAFCO (Muntajat).
Interest in spot cargoes from buyers in India and Taiwan suggests deals will be struck for July and August arrival. Some market players suggested with freight rates climbing for Middle East cargoes, business could be concluded relatively quickly as buyers seek to secure material, rather than risk missing out. With ship owners reluctant to send vessels near the Strait of Hormuz, there is increasing interest in CFR cargoes from the region, rather than FOB volumes.
A month-long turnaround at one of Sorfert Algeria’s two ammonia units from late June means around 70,000 tonnes will be removed from the market during the first few weeks of the quarter. Traders such as Trammo and OCI have turned to producers in Egypt and Trinidad, respectively, to replace some of the lost volume. In the Black Sea, lower pipeline pumping rates to Yuzhny in early July means export availability is rather limited.
Summer turnarounds at ammonia and downstream fertilizer and chemicals plants will reduce demand for the next couple of months, although no major increase in import requirements is expected. Falling natural gas prices mean most groups can produce their own material at figures that are quite competitive compared to foreign volumes. The impact on the regional ammonia market of the Ukrainian government’s ban on imports of all Russian mineral fertilizers from 1 July is unclear.
We offer the following regional Ammonia analysis and news coverage to keep you informed of factors and developments affecting prices in the Asia & Europe Ammonia marketplace.
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Ammonia is one of the main sources of nitrogen in fertilisers, as it contains 82% of nitrogen (N), which is essential for the life of plants. Ammonia (NH3) is produced through a chemical reaction (electrolysis).
ICIS reports on ammonia on a global basis, with reports in Europe, Asia and the US. At the same time, we are able to draw on global resources in London, Houston (Texas), Singapore and Shanghai.
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