Japan's naphtha imports for the petrochemical sector fell by 2.8% in January vs levels of December. Naphtha imports for ethylene production totalled 2,126,318 kilolitres, or 1,463,834 tons, as compared with 2,186,689 kl in December. Imports are expected to deteriorate over the next few months as crackers enter a heavy maintenance period. At least 2.5 mln tons of naphtha- about 5% of total demand in Japan, South Korea and Taiwan will be cut because of maintenance. Of that 1.6 mln tons will be from Japan.