Limited availability has pushed PE prices higher in local markets across Southeast Asia this week, with the largest increases being observed in LDPE and LLDPE film prices while HDPE film prices have seen smaller increases in accordance with relatively weaker demand, as per Chemorbis. Demand for LDPE film continues to be supported by severe supply limitations while LLDPE film is being used as a substitute for LDPE film and has benefited from the shortage of LDPE film. Rising import prices as well as a firm trend in the Chinese PE market have also lent support to the upward trend in the region’s local markets.
In Malaysia, distributors announced further upward revisions on their offers this week after domestic producers had announced upward revisions on October offers for all products last week. On a week over week basis, offers for domestic PE cargoes gained MYR132-294/ton (US$43-96/ton) for LDPE film, MYR120-188/ton (US$39-61/ton) for LLDPE film and MYR13-112/ton (US$4-36/ton) for HDPE film. Converters reported that they are planning to purchase enough material to cover their needs at the new price levels as they do not expect to see much relief on prices over the near term. In Vietnam, offers for locally-held HDPE and LLDPE film both posted increases of US$25-50/ton this week, with distributors reporting that they have already managed to conclude some deals for LLDPE film at prices equal to their new offer levels as they are seeing good demand for this product. Demand for LDPE is also said to be doing well in Vietnam although most distributors commented that they do not have any prompt availability for this product at the moment. In Thailand, offers for domestic PE were reported with increases of THB1000-5000/ton (US$34-169/ton) for LDPE film, THB2000/ton (US$67/ton) for LLDPE film and THB1000-1500/ton (US$34-51/ton) for HDPE film when compared with the past week.
In addition to ongoing plant issues, converters commented that the recent floods in Vietnam and Thailand have disrupted operations at plants in flood-affected areas as well as led to some transportation bottlenecks. As is the case elsewhere in the region, LDPE film is said to be more scare than HDPE or LLDPE film, as several distributors are currently finding it difficult to keep LDPE film cargoes in stock, given extremely limited availability for this product. In Indonesia, domestic producers have announced price increases of US$30-40/ton on their offers for LLDPE film this week, and lifted HDPE film offers by $10-40/ton, with producers attributing their price increases to monomer shortages at their plants. In contrast to much of the region, converters in Indonesia have so far been hesitant to accept the new offer levels, with most converters claiming that they are comfortable with their stock levels and therefore in no rush to make fresh purchases. In the Philippines, distributors reported that they lifted their offers for locally-held LDPE film by PHP1100/ton ($25/ton) this week while leaving their offers for HDPE and LLDPE film unchanged on a week over week basis. Distributors commented that they are seeing better demand from the local market.