Strong performance by PTA strengthens spot paraxylene prices in Asia

After two weeks of stagnancy, spot paraxylene (PX) values for February delivery spiked by about fifteen dollars to US$1125-1135/MT CFR China Main Port (CMP) as per ICIS. News from China, Taiwan and South Korea point to strong performance by key downstream purified terephthalic acid (PTA) that has boosted regional PX prices. PX prices are expected to cross the US$1150/MT mark as on stockpiling by end-users ahead of the week-long Chinese New Year holiday in mid-February. Kuwait Aromatics had started up its new 830,000 tpa PX unit in Shuaiba two weeks ago and the company is expected to export up to 73,000 tons of material every month towards Asia. Downstream petrochemical prices seem to be racing ahead of naphtha due to strong domestic demand in China.
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