Demand from Taiwan props naphtha cracks in Asia

05-Aug-10
Unexpected demand from Taiwan’s Formosa has had a positive impact on naphtha in Asia. Formosa is Asia's top spot naphtha buyer, and has emerged with a tender seeking volumes for H1-September. This has triggered Asia's naphtha to extend gains to reach around a 6-½ week high, with physical cracks rebounding from a five session low to settle at their highest in two sessions, as per Reuters. Formosa is in the market despite the continued shutdown of its 700,000 tpa No. 1 cracker following a blast in first week July. The unit is expected to restart around late September, while its tender closes on Thursday. Volumes have not been specified, but they need volumes since two of their crackers are still running, while supplies at their refinery are disrupted. Some sellers are estimating that the petrochemical maker may buy approximately 100,000 tons since only one of its three CDUs is running since late last week. It had shut all three CDUs on July 26 at the massive 540,000 bpd refinery following a fire.
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