Reduced September polyethylene production in Qatar to impact Asian markets

Qatar's production of polyethylene for September shipments is expected to be down, as per Platts. This reduction in low density polyethylene allocation from Qatar Petrochemical Company (Qapco) in September, is expected to increase tightness in Asia. PE from Qapco and Qatofin from both companies has been reduced this month. Reduction of ethylene feedstock from the Ras Laffan Olefins (RLOC) ethane cracker since August has affected supply of LLDPE from Qatar. The Ras Laffan cracker supplies feedstock ethylene to the PE lines in Mesaieed via a pipeline. LDPE supply is also tight, as apparent with Qapco’s lesser than normal LDPE allocation for September shipments. RLOC’s 1.3 mln tpa ethane cracker has reduced operating rates until the middle of 2011 due to a technical issue. Qatofin runs a 450,000 tpa LLDPE at Mesaieed, while Qapco has two LDPE lines with a combined capacity of 360,000 tpa. Production in the Middle East during the summer months is generally lower due to the high heat affecting the plants.
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