Northeast Asia is set to export propylene cargoes to the US despite windows for arbitrage deliveries between the regions appearing to be formally closed, market sources have been reported by Platts.
On Tuesday, 12,000 mt of propylene was concluded for end January/H1 February loading at US$1,360/mt FOB Taiwan basis, for shipment to the US. Propylene prices in China weakened this week on high inventory levels and low domestic prices. CFR China propylene have fallen US$15/mt since Monday to be assessed at US$1320/mt Thursday. China domestic prices were at Yuan 9,600-9,700/mt or US$1282-1296/mt on an import parity basis.
In the US, polymer-grade propylene contracts for January were heard settling 15 cents/lb higher at 73 cents/lb (US$1609/mt) delivered, on soaring spot prices Tuesday, market sources said. Spot polymer-grade propylene prices have surged 17 cents/lb since November 30 and were last assessed on January 4 at 71.50 cents/lb on tight supplies stemming from recent outages. Those outages include three weeks of downtime at PetroLogistics' 545,000 m tpa plant in Houston due to equipment failure. The facility began restart procedures on January 6.