Quarterly Update on Global Petroleum Coke Market
For the Quarter Ending June 2021
Petroleum Coke prices followed an upward rally this quarter again, backed by recovering demand and consistent supply tightness across the region. Continuous price increment in price was observed in USA due to lower availability against firm demand pattern. Winter devastation during February and soaring freight cost also exacerbated the crises, causing an unprecedented rise in prices. Downstream producers were heard opting for cheaper alternatives than Pet Coke, however USA export to Brazil remained high in the meantime. Therefore, prices of Pet Coke were accessed at USD 430/MT for calcined grade in USA during final week of June.
Asian market witnessed bearish offtakes for Pet Coke during this quarter, due to overall market dullness amid infirm demand and adequate availability. In China, prices of Pet Coke followed a downward trajectory in mid-May. On the other hand, in India, prices of Pet Coke fell sharply till the May end, and later rebounded effectively in June. This price fall was supported by significant fall in demand from cement manufacturers amid resurgence of the pandemic in the country. In addition, due to huge rise in USA Pet Coke prices, Asian manufacturer were heard switching to cheaper alternatives from Australia. Thus, the price of Pet Coke hovered around USD 220/MT for Non-Calcined Pet Coke in India during June end.
Firm sentiments for Pet Coke were observed in the European market, supported by modest to firm demand from downstream manufacturers. Amidst stable demand scenario after sufficient economic recovery from the pandemic, supply remained tight for Pet Coke in the regional market. While imports from USA were very expensive in the meantime due to soaring freight cost and congestion across major trade routes. Therefore, overall hike in price of Pet Coke observed during Q2 2021.
For the Quarter Ending March 2021
North American winter storm affectively chocked the production of Petroleum Coke across the region as manufacturers faced various hurdles in operating their plants in such weather conditions. Thus, the winter storm led several plants or refineries to kneel down and settle the production to almost zero. It was estimated that, due to the storm more than 50,000 tonnes of production got hampered which supported its prices rigorously, and the prices rose from USD 205 (January 2021) to USD 220 per MT (March 2021). Till March end positive optimism started hovering with restart of several plants across the region.
In the Asian market, Pet Coke prices as well as the demand varied across different countries, as in India demand for Petroleum Coke was deemed high, on the other hand, in China, it remained low. In Chinese market, demand for Petroleum Coke remained low from the steel manufacturing sector, and amid stable supply, prices dropped effectively, in the quarter Q1 2021. Meanwhile in India, high demand from cement manufacturing sector supported the prices of Petroleum Coke throughout the quarter, which affected the retail cement prices in India. Several Petroleum Coke giants increased their prices e.g., RIL (Reliance Industries Ltd) increased its Petroleum Prices roughly from around USD 125 per MT to USD 150 per MT within the quarter.
The European market witnessed a boom in exports for Petroleum Coke, especially from Asia. As the North America region remained chocked in terms of production as well in exports due to the freezing storm, meanwhile Europe fetched the opportunity to grab its market for this quarter. However, Suez Canal crisis during March end, temporarily hampered the exports. Before this crisis, container shortages were already in existence but during Suez Canal crisis, freight charges also increased effectively.
For the Quarter Ending December 2020
Demand for Petroleum Coke in the Asian market exhibited strong growth in Q4 2020 compared to Q3 2020. The demand has increased from cement industry due to ongoing construction activities in South East Asia especially China, Vietnam and India. The prices of calcined and non-calcined Petroleum Coke were traded at 200-240 USD/MT and 62-76 USD/MT depending on the quantity and proximity from the import location. The market sentiments have improved in Q4 2020, owing to increase in construction activities and rising demand from steel, cement and aluminium Industry. The prices of Petroleum Coke are anticipated to remain stable in Q1 2021 due to balance in demand and supply scenario.
Demand for Petroleum Coke in the European market remained firm. Exports from Phillips 66 Company plant located in United Kingdom have increased due to weak demand in the country. Further, majority of exports are shipped to APAC countries. The prices of Petroleum Coke in European region differ due to mixed demand across the region. The price of Petroleum Coke HSR grade was traded between 340-416 USD/MT, while HSP grade was traded around 1000- 1200 USD/MT. The prices have improved by 3-5 percent compared to Q3 2020. The demand from European region is anticipated to increase in coming months and prices of Petroleum Coke are expected to increase due to rise in crude oil prices across the globe.
With the consistent increment in prices of the feedstock crude oil, Petroleum Coke prices in the US took an uptrend later in the Q4 2020. The demand for Petroleum Coke in the region has increased compared to Q3 2020, and the prices of non-calcined Petroleum Coke were traded between 60-72 USD/ MT. While green Petroleum Coke prices registered an upward trend and are traded between 67-73 USD/MT. The margin on Petroleum Coke have improved and the demand is surging from domestic and export market. The refineries with higher Nelson Complexity Index registered a healthy demand and higher profit margin due to rise in prices of sweet crude, while the sour crude prices gain momentum marginally. The prices of Petroleum Coke are anticipated to increase in coming months due to rising demand from the region and end use industry.