For the Quarter Ending December 2023
Potassium Nitrate pricing in the Europe region during the fourth quarter of 2023 has been influenced by several key factors. Firstly, the market has experienced increased demand for Potassium Nitrate-based fertilizers, driven by initiatives to improve agricultural productivity and the rising need for climate-neutral EU-produced fertilizers. Secondly, the ongoing climate crises and concerns over reduced shipments through the Panama waterway due to the El Nino climate pattern have contributed to the bullish market sentiment. Additionally, higher gas prices and uncertainties surrounding OPEC's crude oil production cut and the Israel-Hamas conflict have affected energy and manufacturing industries, leading to upward pressure on prices.
In the Netherlands, which has seen significant changes in prices, the upward trend has been driven by the increased demand from the downstream fertilizer industry. Producers have stocked up before going under maintenance, while new year production plans have raised positive sentiments among marketers. The appreciation of the Euro to USD has further supported the price hike.
Throughout the quarter, there have been certain temporary plant closures globally due to maintenance, impacting the supply chain. However, domestic stocking and moderate supply levels have compensated for the material shortage in European territories.
The latest price of Potassium Nitrate FD Rotterdam in the Netherlands for the fourth quarter of 2023 is USD 905/MT.
In the APAC region, the pricing of Potassium Nitrate in the current quarter of 2023 (Q4) has been influenced by several factors. Firstly, the market for Potassium Nitrate has experienced a bearish trend due to limited demand growth, particularly in the fertilizer industry. This can be attributed to weak consumer and investor confidence both domestically and internationally. Additionally, the ongoing maintenance shutdowns of several upstream production plants have affected the supply chain, leading to moderate supply levels. One country that has seen significant changes in Potassium Nitrate prices is China. Despite the festive season, demand from China's fertilizer industry has remained low, resulting in lower prices. The depreciation of the Chinese yuan against the USD has also impacted the pricing. Furthermore, uncertainties in the energy and manufacturing industry, such as OPEC's crude oil production cut and concerns over the Israel-Hamas conflict, have added to the bearish market sentiment. In terms of price trends and seasonality, there has been a decrease in prices of Potassium Nitrate in China in the current quarter compared to the previous quarter of 2023. However, there has been no significant price change compared to the same quarter of the previous year. Additionally, the price comparison between the first and second half of the quarter in China has shown a decrease of 4%. Overall, the pricing of Potassium Nitrate in the APAC region, particularly in China, has been influenced by limited demand, maintenance shutdowns, currency fluctuations, and uncertainties in the energy and manufacturing industry. The latest price of Potassium Nitrate FOB Shanghai in China for the current quarter is USD 750/MT."
The fourth quarter of 2023 (Q4) for Potassium Nitrate in the Middle East and Africa (MEA) region has been marked by several factors that have impacted the market and prices. Firstly, there has been a surplus inventory in the domestic market, leading to a decline in prices. Limited demand growth has further contributed to the downward trend. Additionally, the uncertainty surrounding the energy and manufacturing industry due to OPEC's crude oil production cut and concerns about the Israel-Hamas war has created an atmosphere of caution. In terms of specific country analysis, Jordan has experienced the most significant changes in prices. The prices of Potassium Nitrate in Jordan have continued to decline in the fourth quarter. The surplus inventory and limited demand growth have played a key role in this downward trend. However, there have been no reported plant shutdowns in the region during this period. Analysing the price trend in Jordan for Q4 2023, there has been a decrease of -2.1% in prices compared to the previous quarter. This decline can be attributed to factors such as the easing of upstream prices during the destocking season and the impact of the weakening dollar. Additionally, ample domestic inventory in Jordan has contributed to the drop in prices. In conclusion, the fourth quarter of 2023 has seen a decline in Potassium Nitrate prices in the MEA region, with Jordan experiencing the most significant changes. The surplus inventory and limited demand growth have been the primary factors influencing the market. The quarter ended with Potassium Nitrate prices at USD 805/MT FOB Aqaba in Jordan.
For the Quarter Ending September 2023
During the third quarter of 2023, Potassium Nitrate prices showed mixed trends; after declining for the first half of the quarter, Potassium Nitrate prices stabilized midway through the quarter and improved towards the back end of the quarter. There was a sharp decline in demand as the bookings fell significantly from agriculture retailers, and the same can be seen in the prices of all key fertilizers in the US market. Thus, the market participants were unable to negotiate, and hence, prices experienced a downturn. However, agriculture retailers reported improved procurements and the same could be seen in the prices. Therefore, after the conclusion of the third quarter, Potassium Nitrate prices were assessed at USD 805 per MT on a FOB basis.
After a strong start in the first couple of weeks of Q3 2023, Potassium Nitrate prices dropped sharply till the end of the first half of the third quarter. However, prices recovered towards the later stages of the quarter on the back of rejuvenated demand fundamentals in September 2023. In the first half of the quarter, demand remained underwhelming; there were limited procurements, and no new procurements were reported. There was ample availability of supply in the market catering to the available demand. However, the demand from the agrochemical and fertilizer industry picked up, and the same was observed in the prices at the back end of the quarter. Thus, after the conclusion of Q3, Potassium Nitrate prices were assessed at USD 795 per MT on an FOB basis.
In the third quarter, Potassium Nitrate prices declined on the back of declining demand from the downstream industries, including agrochemicals. Demand from the fertilizer industry plays a crucial role, and dismal consumption from the agriculture industry overshadowed the supply constraints in the European market. Thus, prices were unable to recover and remained underwhelming throughout the quarter. Throughout the quarter, Europe faced tougher economic conditions with declining outputs, rising inflation, and consequent changes in interest rates. PMI in the Eurozone decreased consistently; however, the pace slowed down towards the end of the quarter. Thus, after the conclusion of September 2023, Potassium Nitrate prices in the Netherlands were assessed at USD 860 per MT on an FD basis.