US Freeze Fallout Impacted Both Methanol Imports and Exports: USITC Data
- Journalist: Robert Hume
US International Trade Commission data shows that US imports have fallen from 99.25 million gallons in January to 80.85 million gallons in February 2021, witnessing a dip of over 18 percent. Whereas US Methanol exports have dropped around 38% which plummeted from 81.72 million gallons to 51.04 million gallons in February.
A major cause has been attributed to freeze fallout that happened in second half of February which caused regional ports to shut down hence offsetting trade. However, shutting down of downstream acetic acid and MTBE plants also exacerbated the already ruffled demand for methanol.
Trinidad and Tobago, the largest exporter of Methanol to the US, sent 51.49 million gallons keeping the decrease to just over 1 million gallons on the month. Following the trend, Equitorial Guinea, second largest exporter to US, also sent 5.04 million gallons less as compared to the first month of the year. Countries such as Netherlands, Russia and Saudi Arabia dispatched zero exports, according to ITC data.
On the other hand, US methanol exports observed a significant drop from Asia, where total volumes delivered was close to half than it was in January 2021. Methanol exports also nosedived in Northwest Europe as well where the decline was assessed of 7.46 million barrels.