Ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA)

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Discover the factors influencing ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA) markets

Ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA) has a wide range of foaming and packaging applications. It can also be used in hoses and tubes, adhesives, wire and cable insulation, as a coating for heat sealing and for encapsulation in solar cells, according to the ratio of ethylene to VA.

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Ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA) news

Europe ethylene spot prices turn firmer on demand, feedstock, looming cracker turnarounds

LONDON (ICIS)–European ethylene spot prices have firmed week on week on the back of better-than-expected demand amid higher feedstock values and an increasing focus on upcoming planned cracker maintenance outages. Spot deals this week have been reported at discounts of 32-35% on the pipeline, prior deals had been at discounts of around 38-39%. Producers say they have received several requests for additional volume offtakes in July. This is being attributed to a combination of factors: Improved sentiment from domestic PVC players following the imposition of tariffs on imports ex-Egypt and the US Continued high container freight rates which are restricting some derivative imports Recent hurricane-related production and logistics disruptions ex-US Firmer month-on-month naphtha values which is likely to drive discussions for the August contract reference price settlement Planned cracker maintenance due to get underway from September particularly that due in Germany with alternative supply flexibility likely to be limited at that time due to pressure issues on the ARG pipeline. With crackers having been run at rates closely aligned with contractual demand – still very much below normal albeit better than in 2023 – there is not too much flexibility for additional volumes at short notice. “Many will have assumed that ethylene supply would always be plentiful,” a source said, “and now they find that it is not the case.” Cracker operators have avoided as far as possible marginal tonne production as spot appetite has been extremely low unless at deep discounts to the prevailing contract price. Crackers are underutilised, so in theory, there is space to ramp up. But with August around the corner and few indications at this stage how long this better-than-expected demand will be sustained, sources assume producers will be reluctant to ramp up production in July. Thumbnail photo: Flooding in Houston, Texas, in the wake of Hurricane Beryl on 8 July 2024, one of the causes of firming ethylene prices. Source: Carlos Ramirez/EPA-EFE/Shutterstock

12-Jul-2024

PODCAST: US Gulf Coast chemicals must prepare for more persistent disruption

BARCELONA (ICIS)–Climate change and warming oceans mean that the US Gulf Coast chemical sector will have to adapt to more frequent weather events such as Hurricane Beryl. Gulf Coast area where Hurricane Beryl made landfall houses 13m tonnes, 29% of US ethylene production capacity Beryl is earliest Category five hurricane on record; busy season forecast Warming oceans mean there may be double the number of severe hurricanes Energy, chemical industries must adapt to cope with more weather events Move towards net zero carbon gives opportunity to relocate plants, infrastructure In this Think Tank podcast, Will Beacham interviews ICIS Business Solutions Group senior executive Nigel Davis and Paul Hodges, chairman of New Normal Consulting. Editor’s note: This podcast is an opinion piece. The views expressed are those of the presenter and interviewees, and do not necessarily represent those of ICIS. Read the latest issue of ICIS Chemical Business. Read Paul Hodges and John Richardson's ICIS blogs.

09-Jul-2024

Asia top stories – weekly summary

SINGAPORE (ICIS)–Here are the top stories from ICIS News Asia and the Middle East for the week ended 5 July 2024. OUTLOOK: Snug import supply supports Asia MEG amid slowing demand By Judith Wang 03-Jul-24 11:52 SINGAPORE (ICIS)–Monoethylene glycol (MEG) import supply in Asia for July is expected to stay snug in the near term, while demand looks set to slow down. INSIGHT: Methanol or ethylene, that is the question for China By Doris He 02-Jul-24 17:00 SINGAPORE (ICIS)–China’s methanol-to-olefins (MTO) industry has always been a focus of attention among methanol market players, as it accounts for half of overall demand. More attention has recently been shifted to ethylene, from the overall margins of a typical MTO plant in coastal regions. OUTLOOK: Asia nylon markets may slow down in H2 2024 on lengthened supply By Charmaine Lim 01-Jul-24 14:40 SINGAPORE (ICIS)–Nylon markets in Asia are expected to slow in H2 2024 compared to the first half of the year as the upcoming seasonal lull in Q3 approaches, with new capacities planned to start up in China this year. S Korea antidumping probe on China SM extends to Sept, discussions and hearings ongoing By Luffy Wu 01-Jul-24 15:22 SINGAPORE (ICIS)–The Korea Trade Commission is continuing with its anti-dumping probe against styrene monomer (SM) imports from China, with some discussions and hearings between the government and market players heard ongoing. PODCAST: China oxo-alcohols to face supply-demand pressure, new capacity to be a focus By Claire Gao 01-Jul-24 19:24 SINGAPORE (ICIS)–In this podcast, ICIS analyst Claire Gao explores the oxo-alcohols market overview and outlook. OUTLOOK: Persistent economic woes dampen Asia chemical freight demand By Hwee Hwee Tan 02-Jul-24 12:03 SINGAPORE (ICIS)–Asia’s chemical freight demand is dampened as macroeconomic doldrums were pulling back spot trades well into the third quarter despite reducing plant capacity losses for key liquid bulk products.

08-Jul-2024

Hurricane Beryl strengthens and shifts path, expected to hit Texas’ Corpus Christi

SAO PAULO (ICIS)–Hurricane Beryl is expected to post a “slow re-intensification” as it heads towards the north and could potentially hit Texas’ industrial hub of Corpus Christi by Monday. On 4 July, the US National Hurricane Center had said Beryl had weakened from a category 5 hurricane to a category 3 and was expected to become a storm thereafter. However, on Friday, as the Hurricane brought havoc to Yucatan, the NHC said it could strengthen again once it hits sea waters, making it stronger as it heads to make another landfall in Texas. “Beryl is expected to emerge over the southwestern Gulf of Mexico tonight and then move northwestward toward northeastern Mexico and southern Texas by the end of the weekend,” said the NHC on Friday morning. “Maximum sustained winds have decreased to near 85 mph (140 km/h) with higher gusts. Continued rapid weakening is expected as Beryl moves farther inland and crosses the Yucatan Peninsula today, but slow re-intensification is expected once Beryl moves back over the Gulf of Mexico.” Moreover, the Houston area – an eight-million-strong metropolitan area – could also now be subject to a significant impact, although analysts at Space City Weather said on Friday the impact “will be mostly manageable locally”. PETROCHEMICALS, ENERGYWhile the Altamira petrochemicals hub in the Mexican state of Tamaulipas was spare from the worse, industrial assets in Texas may not have the same luck. The current pathway projected by the NHC implies that Beryl would make landfall in Texas right in the Corpus Christi area, where major refining and petrochemical assets are located. In addition to being a refining and petrochemical hub, Corpus Christi is a major oil-exporting port and hosts a terminal that exports liquefied natural gas (LNG). If Beryl finally disrupts US LNG exports, that could have a knock-on effect on petrochemical prices by shutting down one of the eight LNG export terminals in the country. If the disruption lasted long enough, prices for natural gas would fall. Lower gas prices would drag down those for ethane, the main feedstock that US crackers use to produce ethylene. Petrochemical producers could benefit from lower feedstock costs. Meanwhile, as Beryl strengthens again, energy companies in Texas may choose to shut their plants as a precaution, as well as oil and gas wells in the Gulf of Mexico. Major US oil and liquefied natural gas (LNG) ports could also be touched by Beryl now, which could potentially cause major disruption in supplies. THE WEEKEND IS KEYSpace City Weather said that where Beryl ultimately makes landfall will depend on how far the high-pressure system is over the southern US retreats. The landfall location is “complicated by the contour of the South Texas coastline, which is very nearly north-south relative” to the Gulf of Mexico. “Regarding Houston, I would love to be able to tell you with certainty that Beryl will make landfall near or south of Corpus Christi. I truly think that will be the case. But as Beryl’s track has moved significantly in the last 24 hours that is not something I can guarantee you,” concluded analyst Eric Berger. Source: US National Hurricane Center

05-Jul-2024

Four Asia chemical majors in consortium to build green polyester supply chain

SINGAPORE (ICIS)–A consortium consisting of four Asian petrochemical producers have agreed to establish a sustainable polyester fiber supply chain. Japan's Mitsubishi Corp, South Korea’s SK geo centric, Thailand’s Indorama Ventures Ltd (IVL), and India Glycols along with three other companies are part of the consortium, the companies said in a joint statement on Thursday. Japanese sports apparel firm Goldwin is the project owner of the initiative, while Finnish refiner Neste is also part of the consortium alongside Japan-based engineering firm Chiyoda Corp. Financial details of the project were not disclosed. The project aims to utilize renewable and bio-based materials as well as materials produced via carbon capture and utilization (CCU) to manufacture polyester fibers for THE NORTH FACE brand in Japan. Outdoor apparel and equipment brand THE NORTH FACE is operated by Goldwin in Japan. "After that, the launch of further products and brands of Goldwin will be considered," Chiyoda said in the statement. The polyester fiber produced from the project is planned to be used by Goldwin for a part of THE NORTH FACE products, including sports uniforms in July this year. Chiyoda will supply CCU-based paraxylene (PX) to the supply chain, while Thai polyester producer IVL will contribute renewable CCU-based purified terephthalic acid (PTA). In March 2022, Chiyoda started producing carbon dioxide (CO2)-based PX at its pilot plant at the company's Koyasu Research Park in Kanagawa prefecture as part of a project linked with Japan's New Energy and Industrial Technology Development Organization (NED). SK geo centric and Neste will be supplying renewable PX and renewable naphtha, respectively. India Glycols, which produces monoethylene glycol (MEG), will supply bio-ethylene glycol made mainly from sugarcane. Toyobo MC Corporation (TMC) – a joint venture between Toyobo Co and Mitsubishi Corp – will be supplying renewable bio-CCU polyethylene terephthalate (PET). Details on supply volumes from each of the consortium partners were not disclosed. Thumbnail photo: A generic polyester clothing label (Sandvik/imageBROKER/Shutterstock)

04-Jul-2024

Hurricane Beryl on track to make landfall near US, Mexico border

HOUSTON (ICIS)–Hurricane Beryl is on track to make landfall on Monday near the border of Mexico and the US on the Gulf Coast, although the path could change in the next few days. If Beryl holds to its forecasted path, it would spare the major refining and petrochemical hubs in the US and Mexico. In addition, few if any energy companies may choose to shut in US oil and gas wells in the Gulf of Mexico. Major US oil and LNG ports would escape the worst of the storm. The following map shows the forecasts path of Hurricane Beryl as of midday on Wednesday. The forecasted path puts Hurricane Beryl between the Mexican petrochemical hub of Altamira, Tamaulipas state and the US hub of Corpus Christi, Texas state. IF BERYL CHANGES COURSE, IT COULD THREATEN CORPUS CHRISTIIn addition to being a refining and petrochemical hub, Corpus Christi is a major oil-exporting port and hosts a terminal that exports liquefied natural gas (LNG). Were a storm to disrupt US LNG exports, it would have a knock-on effect on petrochemical prices by shutting down one of the eight LNG export terminals in the country. If the disruption lasted long enough, prices for natural gas would fall. Lower gas prices would drag down those for ethane, the main feedstock that US crackers use to produce ethylene. Petrochemical producers could benefit from lower feedstock costs. UPDATE ON HURRICANE BERYLHurricane Beryl is the first Category 5 hurricane to form so early in the season. Category 5 hurricanes have the strongest winds under the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale, with speeds exceeding 157 miles/hour (253 km/hour). Beryl is near Jamaica and it should weaken as it approaches the Yucatan peninsula in Mexico, where it should make landfall on Friday. It will cross the peninsula, enter the Bay of Campeche and remain north of the Mexican state of Veracruz, which is home to the petrochemical hub of Coatzacoalcos and the Ethylene XXI integrated polyethylene (PE) complex. It will swing north before making another landfall near Brownsville, Texas state and Matamoros, Tamaulipas state. BUSY HURRICANE SEASONMeteorologists have warned that this year's hurricane season could be the most active ever, with 17-25 named storms. Out of those, 8-13 should be hurricanes and 4-7 should be major hurricanes. Major hurricanes are Category 3-5 storms with wind speeds of at least 111 miles/hour.

03-Jul-2024

Brazil’s Braskem still facing logistical woes at Triunfo facilities

RIO DE JANEIRO (ICIS)–Brazil’s polymers major Braskem is still facing some logistical challenges at its facilities in Triunfo, in the floods-hit state of Rio Grande do Sul, according to a letter to customers seen by ICIS. Braskem was forced to shut down its Triunfo facilities after the severe flooding which affected the state in May. By the beginning of June, the producer said it hoped its operations would return to normality in a few days, according to a spokesperson in a written response to ICIS. However, according to the letter to customers, dated 28 June, Braskem’s operations at Triunfo are yet to return to normality, mostly due to logistical woes as many roads and key port operations at the Brazilian state were hit by the aftermath of the floods. “Specific challenges resulting from force majeure still persist in some logistics modes, leading to the partial receipt of inputs for the production of products derived from ethanol and green ethylene,” said the letter. “At the moment, there is no risk of interruption in the supply of these products, and we are implementing alternatives to return availability to normal levels.” At the end of June, an analyst said to ICIS most of the roads in Rio do Grande do Sul had reopened, although some of them were operating at reduced capacity. The Port of Porto Alegre, the largest city in the state and close to the Triunfo petrochemicals hub, only reopened in mid-June. TRIUNFO KEY FOR PLASTICS Braskem is Brazil’s sole manufacturer of polyethylene (PE) and polypropylene (PP), the most widely used polymers. Its market share in 2023 for PE stood at 56% and for PP at 70%, according to figures from the ICIS Supply & Demand database. The Triunfo complex, meanwhile, is key for the country’s polymers supply chain, accounting for nearly 37% of Brazil’s PP capacity and 40% of PE capacity. Brazil’s total PP production capacity is nearly 2 million tonnes/year. PE capacity is about 3 million tonnes/year, with 41% being high-density polyethylene (HDPE), 33% being linear low-density polyethylene (LLDPE) and 26% being low-density polyethylene (LDPE). Braskem’s Triunfo complex can produce 740,000 tonnes/year of PP, 550,000 tonnes/year of HDPE, 385,000 tonnes/year of LDPE and 300,000 tonnes/year of LLDPE. Additional reporting by Jonathan Lopez 

03-Jul-2024

Major Hurricane Beryl continues trek toward Mexico, US Gulf

HOUSTON (ICIS)–Hurricane Beryl continued to make its way west toward Mexico and the US Gulf on Tuesday afternoon, with landfall possible some time on Sunday. Meteorologists at the National Hurricane Center (NHC) said Beryl was about 125 miles (205 km) east southeast of Isla Beata, Dominican Republic, and moving west northwest at 22 miles/hour. Source: National Hurricane Center (NHC) The storm is going back and forth between a Category 4 and Category 5 hurricane as maximum sustained winds are at 155 miles/hour but had been at 165 mile/hour earlier in the day. According to the Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Winds Scale, a storm reaches Category 5 when maximum sustained winds reach 157 miles/hour. Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale Category Wind speed 1 74-95 miles/hour 2 96-110 miles/hour 3 111-129 miles/hour 4 130-156 miles/hour 5 157+ miles/hour The most recent forecast indicates Beryl could miss southern Veracruz state in Mexico, where Braskem Idesa has its integrated polyethylene (PE) Ethylene XXI complex and where a lot of Mexico’s petchem capacity is located. Altamira is still in the projected path. The regions have been experiencing a drought and rainfall from Beryl could provide the area with much-needed rain but could also impact operations at the multitude of chemical facilities in the area. Another scenario would be if the storm swings to the north, which could threaten oil and gas production in the US Gulf as well as Gulf Coast petchem operations. A producer with capacity in the Corpus Christi area said it was still too early to decide on operations. ACTIVE HURRICANE SEASON The early activity in the Atlantic Ocean is in line with forecasts calling for a busier than usual hurricane season. The US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is predicting the greatest number of hurricanes in the agency’s history. NOAA forecasters with the Climate Prediction Center said that the hurricane season – which started on 1 June and runs through 30 November – has an 85% chance to be above normal, a 10% chance of being near normal and only a 5% chance of being below normal. Damage from hurricanes can lead to increased demand for chemicals, but hurricanes and tropical storms can also disrupt the North American petrochemical industry because many of the nation's plants and refineries are along the US Gulf Coast in the states of Texas and Louisiana. In 2022, oil and natural gas production in the Gulf of Mexico accounted for about 15% of total US crude oil production and about 2% of total US dry natural gas production, according to the US Energy Information Administration (EIA). Even the threat of a major storm can disrupt oil and natural gas supplies because companies often evacuate US Gulf platforms as a precaution. Additional reporting by Mark Milam, Al Greenwood and Melissa Wheeler

02-Jul-2024

Category 4 Hurricane Beryl headed toward Mexico, could threaten chem ops along US Gulf Coast

HOUSTON (ICIS)–Hurricane Beryl, already a major Category 4 storm, is making its way toward Mexico, but it remains too early to tell where it will ultimately make landfall. Beryl is now the earliest Category 4 storm on record in the Atlantic. The previous earliest was Hurricane Dennis on 8 July 2005. The US National Hurricane Center (NHC) said as of 1900 GMT Beryl was about 60 miles (100km) west northwest of Carriacou Island with maximum sustained winds of 150 miles/h and moving west-northwest at 20 miles/h. Source: National Hurricane Center (NHC) Late-cycle track guidance from the Tropical Cyclone Guidance Project (TCGP) shows the different tracks based on various models in the image below. Source: Tropical Cyclone Guidance Project (TCGP) If the storm continues to move to the west, it could threaten Mexican facilities in Veracruz state, which is in the south of the Bay of Campeche. Also in the region are the major port city of Coatzacoalcos and Braskem Idesa’s integrated polyethylene (PE) Ethylene XXI complex. Beryl could also make landfall near Altamira, which has been experiencing a drought and could provide the area with much-needed rain but could also impact operations at the multitude of chemical facilities in the area. Another scenario would be if the storm swings to the north, which could threaten oil and gas production in the US Gulf as well as Gulf Coast petchem operations. Beryl is expected to pass near Jamaica on Wednesday but the storm is unlikely to affect the chlor-alkali chain. Jamaica is home to a number of large alumina refineries that consume significant volumes of US caustic soda, used to refine alumina from bauxite, or aluminium ore. ACTIVE HURRICANE SEASON The early activity in the Atlantic Ocean is in line with forecasts calling for a busier-than-usual hurricane season. The US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) is predicting the greatest number of hurricanes in the agency’s history. NOAA forecasters with the Climate Prediction Center said that the hurricane season – which started on 1 June and runs through 30 November – has an 85% chance to be above normal, a 10% chance of being near normal and only a 5% chance of being below normal. The prediction of 17-25 named storms is the highest ever, topping the 14-23 predicted in 2010. A storm is named once it has sustained winds of 39 miles/h. Saffir-Simpson Hurricane Wind Scale Category Wind speed 1 74-95 miles/h 2 96-110 miles/h 3 111-129 miles/h 4 130-156 miles/h 5 157+ miles/h Damage from hurricanes can lead to increased demand for chemicals, but hurricanes and tropical storms can also disrupt the North American petrochemical industry because many of the nation's plants and refineries are along the US Gulf Coast in the states of Texas and Louisiana. In 2022, oil and natural gas production in the Gulf of Mexico accounted for about 15% of total US crude oil production and about 2% of total US dry natural gas production, according to the US Energy Information Administration (EIA). Even the threat of a major storm can disrupt oil and natural gas supplies because companies often evacuate US Gulf platforms as a precaution. Additional reporting by Al Greenwood, Kelly Coutu, Bill Bowen

01-Jul-2024

Flat chemical prices to increase in coming quarters; volumes booming – US HB Fuller

SAO PAULO (ICIS)–Most chemical prices have stabilized, and a few are posting small rises, a trend which should strengthen in coming quarters as global manufacturing picks up, executives at US-headquartered adhesives producer HB Fuller said on Thursday. Celeste Mastin, CEO at the company, said sales volumes in Q2 had posted a “strong performance” and came higher than initially expected, with regions such as Europe also improving and some sectors in China “growing like crazy”. The improvement in manufacturing prospects globally prompted HB Fuller to increase its 2024 financial guidance earlier this week after it published its Q2 financial results, which showed sales rose by 2%, year on year, and earnings by 10.1%. As an adhesives producer, HB Fuller's raw materials include tackifying resins, polymers, synthetic rubber, plasticizers and vinyl acetate monomer (VAM). The company’s fiscal year starts on 1 December; its fiscal Q2 covers March-May. EARLIER THAN PLANNED RECOVERYAfter its longest downturn ever, chemicals may finally be savoring the green shoots of a recovery in earnest. HB Fuller, at least, is. According to Mastin, the notable improvement in Q2 foresees a healthier second half of the year, with the improvement across all the company’s divisions and regions it operates in. “We have had a strong volume performance and, actually, we were planning volume growth in the mid-single digits for the second half, but we are already seing that, which explains Q2 [performance],” she said, speaking to reporters and chemical equity analysts. “We track the prices of 4,000 raw materials – 80% they are flat or increasing slightly. We think from Q3 onward the trend will be for increases over time.” HB Fuller’s upbeat assessment contrasts with what the company issued after its fiscal Q1. At the time, Mastin said sales volumes were still weak and, if that situation persisted, prices of specialty chemicals, which had so far held up reasonably well, could also fall. The improvement as of late has prompted the company to also raise its selling prices forecast – from an initially expected negative pricing impact of 2-3%, the company now forecasts a negative impact of 1-2%. Those pricing negative effects, however, will be overcome by growth in sales volumes, the CEO said. Mastin went on to say the automotive sector is one where HB Fuller is “aggressively” trying to gain market share, adding the strategy is paying off with sales volumes up between 20% and 30% compared with last year. “In China, we have a very strong position in automotive. But we are seeing healthy performance in other sectors as well, such glass, aerospace, or electronics – the latter is growing like crazy there. Equally, we are also seeing strong growth in India,” said Mastin. HB Fuller’s CFO, John Corkrean, also present at the press conference, added that, after a poor Q1, even the beleaguered European economy – under pressure since Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and the consequent energy prices shock – also showed some positive signs in Q2. “We have seen a return to volume growth in all market segments. Some spots such as hygiene remain a weak spot, but we have also seen there an improvement from Q1 and we expect to see further improvement in the next two quarters,” said Corkrean. “Europe was slow in Q1 but that improved in Q2 in , for example, the construction-related businesses. These are positive signs we expect will continue in coming quarters.” Front page picture shows glue being applied Source: Shutterstock

27-Jun-2024

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