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Updated to Q2 2016
Black Sea ammonia prices have moved in a narrow range through the second quarter of 2016, starting April in the $270-275/tonne FOB range, moving to a high of $280-290/tonne FOB during May and then ending June back below $270/tonne FOB amid expectations that prices will fall moving into the third quarter.
In May, market sentiment improved and producer offers increased, which saw deals concluded at slightly higher numbers. Export availability remained limited and pipeline maintenance also restricted loadings from the Black Sea.
However, as June started, overall sentiment suggested the global ammonia market faces downward pressure on prices during the second half of the year as new capacity comes onstream. Ammonia from a new plant in Russia is due to start shipping from the Baltic in July, while new capacity is also expected onstream in the US.
A $30/tonne reduction in the Tampa ammonia contract for July cargoes suggests that Black Sea ammonia prices will correct down.
Updated to Q1 2017
Ammonia prices in the Black Sea and Asia Pacific – among other regions – increased steadily during the first three months of 2017 as a severe shortage of export material at Yuzhny throughout January and early February squeezed supply.
The seven-week dispute between Russian giant Togliattiazot and Ukrainian pipeline operator Ukrkhimtransammiak (UKHTA) meant Ameropa’s shipment schedule was thrown into disarray and spot cargoes from other suppliers were required at short notice.
The disruption was compounded by the absence of OPZ ammonia due to a lack of natural gas at the troubled Ukrainian producer, although the state-owned manufacturer finally returned to life in early March following the signing of a gas tolling agreement.
Meanwhile, Mitsui’s decision to send almost 50,000 tonnes of Saudi ammonia to Belgium rather than to Asia Pacific meant a shortage of the nitrogen fertilizer for spot buyers in India, Korea and Taiwan – although seasonal factors meant such requirements were limited anyway.
As of 15 March, the ICIS Yuzhny FOB range for ammonia was $310-330/tonne FOB, versus around $240/tonne FOB at the start of the year.
Updated to Q2 2015
The domestic ammonium phosphate market received support from the export market from April to June, as the low demand season continued.
Export demand offset the end of the domestic demand season in April, which tempered the fall in domestic prices. In May, large-volume export orders pushed up granular monoammonium phosphate (MAP) export prices from $355/tonne FOB to above $370/tonne FOB. Selling ideas for large and medium-sized diammonium phosphate (DAP) producers firmed at $465/tonne FOB. In addition, the cancellation of favourable electricity prices for fertilizer producers lifted production costs, which gave the incentive for ammonium phosphate producers to firm their prices. However, from mid-to-late June, limited new orders for DAP slightly pulled down discussion levels. Export prices of some small and medium-sized DAP producers were no higher than $465/tonne FOB. Domestic MAP prices were largely stable on modest demand from the compound fertilizer producers as the autumn purchase season arrived earlier.
Supply tightened slightly as many ammonium phosphate producers conducted maintenance in April-May and this also supported the domestic market. The next turnaround season will arrive in October-November before the peak winter buying period.
At the end of June, most ammonium phosphate producers said that the market would unlikely regain steam in the near term. However, most of them have received enough orders for production until the end of July to prepare for the autumn buying starting from mid-August. Hence, they are mostly expecting prices to remain largely flat, with little downside potential.
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.
In Europe, we report on the key benchmark using the free on board (FOB) Yuzhny spot price and also include cost & freight (CFR) prices for north Africa and northwest Europe (NWE).
In the Asia section, we have CFR prices for India, Taiwan and Korea. Throughout the week, we speak to a wide range of people – including producers, consumers and traders – in order to obtain a broad range of accurate information for our subscribers. All of our reporting is backed up by a strong methodology.
ICIS collects pricing data on a wide range of chemical, energy and fertilizer products, including Ammonia. Our extensive experience in price reporting means we can offer you access to historical data dating back more than 20 years for certain commodities.
Our time series of pricing data enables you to build and model trends, to get a view of where markets might be heading. The data service includes charting functionality, allowing you to chart and download multiple data series for manipulation in your own internal models. You can also export data to Excel via the ICIS dashboard service.
ICIS launches Global Ammonia Markets General Methodology Consultation more >>
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.
Our in-depth market knowledge drives our specialist focus, as we recognise the importance of individual market dynamics and not a one-size-fits-all approach.
Over 25 years of reporting on key chemicals markets, including Ammonia, has brought global recognition of our methodology as being unbiased, authoritative and rigorous in preserving our editorial integrity. Our global network of reporters in Houston, London, Singapore, Shanghai, Guangzhou, Mumbai, Perth and Moscow ensures unrivalled coverage of established and emerging markets.