Ramadan, container shortage, delays in shipping of polymers from the Middle East

17-Aug-11
Port congestion and a lack of container space in Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates are causing delays of shipment of polymer resins from these countries. Platts estimates shipments to be delayed for a few weeks to a month, but noted that it is usual during Ramadan. The Muslim holy month of Ramadan is a period of daily fasting from sunrise to sunset, ending with the Islamic holiday of Eid al-Fitr at the end of August. This leads to shorter working hours during Ramadan, causing congestion at the ports. In the UAE, a source from Borouge also noted that export shipments were "not on schedule" due to the lack of container space. Brought to notice last week, the delay is expected to last until mid-September. However, the shipping delays appear to be limited to Saudi Arabia and the UAE. Sources from Kuwait's Equate, Oman Polypropylene and Iran's PCC said shipments from their countries were not affected.
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