Iran’s exports of polyethylene (PE) and polypropylene (PP) to Pakistan are set to double year-on-year in 2009 to 64,000 tons, and surge 17% to 75,000 tons in 2010, as per ICIS. The estimates were based on Pakistan customs department data for the January-September 2009 and full year 2008.
Recent start-up of new plants- Mehr Petrochemical and Laleh Petrochemical and stabilisation of output at plants which came on stream last year have rendered an increase in cargoes. Quality concerns about Iranian material, which used to be considered below par compared with the rest of the Middle East cargoes, have also dissipated with the start-up of new plants in Iran.
The share of Iranian cargoes in total shipments from the Middle East is expected to rise to 17% in 2009, from 11% the previous year.
The delay in Iranian shipments due to diversion of cargoes through Jebel Ali port in the United Arab Emirates – an offshoot of US sanctions against Iran and inadequate port infrastructure at Assalayuh, blunted the appetite for Iranian cargoes in previous years.
Currently, the supply problems have started to alleviate as also be offset by discounts offered by Iranian suppliers.