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.
Updated to Q4 2018
Producers in in China are expected to maintain their current stable but low operating rates. A major Chinese producer plans a turnaround at the end of October for a month, while two northeast Asian producers also have planned turnarounds in the same month. Ahead of winter, stringent environmental checks to curb pollution may curtail supply in China. Supply from southeast Asia is expected to be stable.
Typically, the peak season should start in September, but this year, demand did not see a convincing improvement due to the wider economic situation. Market players are therefore not optimistic that there will be an improvement in October. Moving forward, demand may taper off towards the end of the year due to the winter lull in demand.
INEOS’s Hull, UK plant has restarted following a maintenance shutdown, according to market sources. This has ended a major constraint on European supply. An expansion of this plant is also expected to be completed before the end of the year. However, sources expect imports from Asia to be limited as domestic prices in India are making Europe an unattractive export destination.
Demand is likely to increase as a balanced market with more stable pricing will reduce the number of buyers only purchasing their required volumes. Softening European acetic acid costs might encourage players to buy only necessary volumes, but rising acetic acid prices in Asia could encourage European buyers to restock rather than risk etac prices increasing on acetic acid costs.
Supply is likely to improve in the fourth quarter as Prairie Catalytic’s new bioethanol-to-etac plant in Columbus, Nebraska is expected to start up in late November/early December. The plant is in the commissioning phase, and is on track to begin producing material before the end of the year despite some delays because of the weather.
Demand for etac should be stable through the fourth quarter, supported by a strong US economy. Etac is used in paints and coatings and typically sees peak demand in the summer. After a late start to winter, there is sentiment in the market that the coatings season could extend into November.
We offer the following regional Ethyl acetate analysis and news coverage to keep you informed of factors and developments affecting prices in the Ethyl acetate marketplace.
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Ethyl Acetate Methodology
The major outlet for ethyl acetate (EAC) is coatings which account for 60% of demand. Process solvents, including pharmaceuticals and organic synthesis, account for 15% while printing inks are also estimated at 15%.
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.
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