SABIC has declared force majeure in North America for the production of polycarbonate, exacerbating an already tense supply situation, as per britishplastics.co.uk. The Saudi petrochemicals giant cited a “series of equipment failures” at its Brine facility in Burkville, Alabama, as the reason for the declaration.
It said to customers in a letter dated 8 June that it has been forced to completely shut down the site near the Alabama capital of Montgomery, “severely impacting” its polycarbonate production. The outage at the affected facility, which, according to market intelligence from Plastics Information Europe (PIE), can produce around 265,000 tpa of polycarbonate resin, is expected to last for around five weeks while repairs are being carried out.Starting 19 June, all North American customers for SABIC’s ‘Lexan’ brand polymer were put on allocation for an undetermined period. Supply of extrusion grades will be limited to around 40%, it said while bottle and IR/VR grades will not be supplied at all. In Europe, delivery times for PC orders already reach 12 weeks or even more.