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Stable Acrylonitrile Prices Amid Supply Constraints and Rising Production Costs in Europe
Stable Acrylonitrile Prices Amid Supply Constraints and Rising Production Costs in Europe

Stable Acrylonitrile Prices Amid Supply Constraints and Rising Production Costs in Europe

  • 25-Aug-2023 5:55 PM
  • Journalist: Emilia Jackson

As per the ChemAnalyst data sources, the Acrylonitrile prices remained stable in Europe during August 2023, and Acrylonitrile FD Hamburg witnessed USD 1225/MT. The force Majeure at feedstock Ammonia plant Yara International, with a capacity of 58333 TPM during July, affected the production rates and negatively impacted the availability of supplies during August 2023.

During the mid-month, the firm cost support from the feedstock Propylene and Ammonia collectively raised the production costs of Acrylonitrile. The increases in Propylene prices in the past couple of weeks due to a consistent rise in the upstream Naphtha costs escalated the upstream cost support. Simultaneously, the recent increases in the upstream Natural Gas prices amid increased demand and consumption for cooling purposes amid heatwaves raised the upstream costs and increased the feedstock Ammonia production costs.

Meanwhile, Butachimie in Chalampe, France, with an Acrylonitrile precursor Adiponitrile production capacity of 625,000 MTPA, went for maintenance turnaround from 19 May 2023 till early July 2023.

The supplies were inadequately available due to declining production and supply rates. At the same time, demand for Acrylonitrile improved from the downstream Acrylonitrile Butadiene Styrene and Styrene Acrylonitrile manufacturers due to weak availability of supplies because of previously reduced manufacturing rates.

During June and July, the fall in prices was noticeable. In July only, Acrylonitrile prices declined by almost 8%. The normalization in freight rates improved the domestic inventory levels amid destocking practices by the producers and suppliers. Simultaneously, the strengthening of the Euro due to the hike in bank interest rates by the European Bank reduced the import prices of Acrylonitrile in the region. Supplies were adequately available due to sluggish offtakes from buyers due to reduced manufacturing activities and consumption rates from the downstream industries. The Eurozone's manufacturing Purchasing Manager's Index has consistently declined for the past few months, indicating continuous contractions in manufacturing sector activities.

At the same time, the decrease in the feedstock Propylene costs due to increased inventories amid reduced demand from downstream Polypropylene manufacturers reduced the upstream cost support. Simultaneously, the upstream Ammonia prices declined due to the reduction in upstream Dutch TTF Natural Gas costs. As of 24 July, European gas storage was more than 82% full due to loose Norwegian flows and subdued demand, plus higher exports of Natural Gas from the UK due to persistently strong wind-power generation in the first half of July. It reduced the production costs of Acrylonitrile.

As per the estimation, in the coming few weeks, the availability of Acrylonitrile supplies and production rates will remain sluggish in the region due to the limited availability of feedstock Ammonia supplies. Simultaneously, the disruption in supply chain activities due to storms and typhoons in the Asian region will increase the supply duration of importing materials.

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