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Updated to Q4 2018
Vessel delays into Rotterdam squeezed supply initially; the authorities stopped a vessel carrying methanol from Venezuela when cocaine was found during a routine underwater hull inspection. Flows from Russia resumed after the World Cup restricted chemical-related movements. Local European production picked up after planned Q3 turnarounds at plants including BioMCN’s Dutch methanol unit. Late December brought news of a fire at Europe’s largest methanol plant in Norway, with a timeline unclear about a shutdown for an investigation and repairs.
Prices in Europe weakened, dragged down by a drop in Chinese methanol prices due to falling energy values. European producers and suppliers maintained that downstream demand was healthy in spite of the logistical nightmare brought about by low water levels on the Rhine river, which thwarted attempts by some to lift product. Much was dependent on where consumers were situated. In November, the unusual pull from the Mediterranean seen earlier in 2018 was likely dampened by restart at a Libyan plant announced by its owner.
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ICIS price assessments are based on information gathered from a wide cross-section of the market, comprising consumers, producers, traders and distributors from more than 250 reporters world-wide. Confirmed deals, verified by both buyer and seller, provide the foundation of our price assessments.
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Methanol is primarily used to produce formaldehyde, methyl tertiary butyl ether (MTBE) and acetic acid, with smaller amounts going into the manufacture of DMT, MMA, chloromethanes, methylamines, glycol methyl ethers and fuels.
The Europe methanol report publishes both spot and quarterly contract prices, both of which form benchmarks in the European market. We also publish daily prices via the price alert system giving a complete overview of pricing in the European market.
ICIS talks to producers, buyers, traders, distributors and brokers. The commentary is objective, concise and the pricing is up-to-the-minute and accurate.
ICIS collects pricing data on a wide range of chemical, energy and fertilizer products, including Methanol. Our extensive experience in price reporting means we can offer you access to historical data dating back more than 20 years for certain commodities.
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