LONDON (ICIS)-- Butyl acetate (butac) spot prices have increased as the European market remains tight, according to sources on Friday.
A source said that there is currently an issue at BASF's 90,000 tonnes/year Ludwigshafen plant in Germany and this is creating the shortness in volumes. A BASF source however said it was running properly following a maintenance period that had been extended by a week.
Another source said that the current hikes in prices counters the perception that the market is generally oversupplied.
“It is no longer a production issue. It was a trigger, yes but no longer a factor,” said the source. As it only took a short shock to drive price increases and they have persisted for weeks, the market was obviously shorter than many assumed, it added.
A player said it could see further pushes to increase margins, now the opportunity had presented itself. A producer concurred and said that margins were terrible. A distributor said that it saw no change in demand and was unsure how long the higher prices would last.
The current range for butac now stands at €850- 950/tonne FD (free delivered) NWE (northwest Europe).