Latin America stories: biweekly summary

ICIS Editorial


SAO PAULO (ICIS)–Here are some of the stories from ICIS Latin America for the fornight ended on 19 May.

Brazil’s Unigel to idle Laranjeiras nitrogen fertilizers unit on high natural gas costs
Unigel is to idle its Laranjeiras nitrogen fertilizers plant for 90 days from 1 June on the back of high natural gas costs, the main feedstock for the plant, a spokesperson for the Brazilian chemicals and fertilizers producer confirmed on Friday.

Adnoc, Apollo interested in ‘potential business’ with Brazil’s Petrobras, confirms Braskem bid
Abu Dhabi’s crude oil major Adnoc and US fund management Apollo have expressed interest “in discussing potential business” with Petrobras, the Brazilian energy major said on Friday.

Mexico’s central bank keeps rates at 11.25% amid continued growth, falling inflation
The Banco de Mexico (Banxico) on Thursday kept its main interest rate at 11.25% as inflation remains high, although it noted a slowdown in the pace of price rises while economic output remained healthy.

Global chemicals recovery delayed to 2024 on interest rates, China slower recovery – Unigel CEO
The upturn in global petrochemicals will not come in earnest until 2024 as China’s recovery is proving slower than expected and high interest rates continue depressing demand for durable goods, the CEO at Brazil’s chemicals producer Unigel said on Wednesday.

Argentina’s inflation continues relentless uptrend to 108.8% in April
Argentina’s annual rate of inflation rose to 108.8% in April, up from 104.3% in March, the country’s statistics body Indec said on Friday.

Argentina’s runaway inflation props up PVC demand as consumers rush purchases – Unipar’s CEO
Argentina’s high rates of inflation are causing consumers to rush purchases of polyvinyl chloride (PVC) due to their expectation of ever-rising prices, the CEO at Brazilian chemicals producer Unipar said on Friday.

Brazil inflation falls in April to 4.18%
Brazil’s annual rate of inflation in April was 4.18%, down from 4.65% in March, the country’s statistics body IBGE said on Friday.

Brazil’s Unipar Q1 earnings plunge on lower margins
Unipar’s sales and earnings plunged in the first quarter because of lower margins as selling prices for most of its products fell, the Brazilian chemicals producer said late on Thursday.

Mexico’s inflation falls to 6.25% in April
Mexico’s annual rate of inflation fell in April to 6.25%, down from March’s 6.85%, the country’s statistics body Inegi said on Tuesday.

Mexico’s Braskem Idesa ethane terminal 34% completed
Construction of Braskem Idesa’s ethane import terminal in Mexico was 34% completed by the end of March, the Brazilian petrochemicals major and one of the joint venture (JV) partners said on Tuesday.

INSIGHT: Abu Dhabi makes big moves in Americas chemicals
Abu Dhabi, the emirate and capital of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), is making big moves in the Americas, through its national oil company ADNOC and investment arm Abu Dhabi Investment Authority (ADIA).

Brazil’s Braskem Q1 earnings, net income plunge on lower margins
Braskem’s earnings and net income fell sharply in the first quarter, year on year, on the back of lower spreads for polyolefins, the Brazilian petrochemicals major said on Tuesday.

Adnoc to gain key LatAm petchems position if Braskem takeover offer with Apollo goes through
Adnoc and US investment fund Apollo’s reported acquisition of Brazil’s Braskem could give the Abu Dhabi crude oil major an important steppingstone into the Americas’ petrochemicals industry.

Trinseo sells Mexican PMMA sheet plant to Plaskolite
Trinseo has completed the sale of a plant in Mexico that produces sheet made out of polymethyl methacrylate (PMMA) to Plaskolite, the US-based styrenics and engineered materials producer said on Monday.

Brazil’s January-April automotive output, sales rise despite downturn
Brazil’s petrochemicals-intensive automotive production and sales rose healthily in the January-April period, year on year, although exports fell, the country’s automotive trade group Anfavea said on Monday.

Domestic PP prices down in Mexico, tracking lower spot propylene prices
Domestic polypropylene (PP) prices fell in Mexico, tracking lower US spot polymer-grade propylene (PGP) prices. In other Latin American countries, prices were unchanged.

Domestic PP prices down in Mexico, tracking lower spot propylene prices
Domestic polypropylene (PP) prices fell in Mexico, tracking lower US spot polymer-grade propylene (PGP) prices. In other Latin American countries, prices were unchanged.

LatAm international PE prices steady to lower, domestic prices fall in Colombia
International polyethylene (PE) prices were steady in Brazil while prices were assessed lower in Chile, Colombia, Mexico and Peru because of lower US PE export offers.

Brazil ethanol industry closely follows Petrobras’ plans of changing gasoline, diesel prices
In order to start making regional adjustments while taking into consideration domestic production and the need for imports, Petrobras will alternate the pricing approach for its products, including the elimination of the import parity price (PPI in Portuguese).

Brazil, Argentina and Mexico prices fell due to declining demand and economic instability
Polyvinyl chloride (PVC) prices in Brazil fell this week based on market input. The new price change relies on international benchmark trends and lower demand in May.

Brazil boosts ethanol investment and production with eye toward international markets
According to the most recent Unica data, sugarcane production in Brazil increased 157.30% in the south-central region, 334.21% in Sao Paulo, and 77.39% in the rest of the country.


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