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Taiwanese CPC offers spot naphtha in rare move

February 19/2020

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Taiwan's CPC Corp has offered to sell naphtha cargoes, industry sources said on Tuesday, a rare move by a company which is normally a buyer of naphtha, reported Reuters.

CPC has offered at least 70,000 tonnes of the fuel for loading in the first half of March from Kaohsiung and Taipei through a tender due to be awarded this week, the sources said, adding the exact dates were not clear.

The offer comes at a time when naphtha fundamentals are at their weakest in months as lackluster petrochemicals demand sent the crack value down 16% on Monday to a 4-1/2 month low of $60.88 a tonne.

The crack, or the premium of refining a barrel of Brent crude into naphtha, eased further on Tuesday to USD59.28 a tonne, still a 4-1/2 month low.

It was unclear why CPC has offered the petrochemical feedstock but it has shut a 380,000 tonnes per year (tpy) naphtha cracker in Lin Yuan for a scheduled turnaround from November 2019 to January 2020, according to Reuters data and as MRC wrote before.

It has another 720,000 tpy cracker in Lin Yuan but the operating rates of that unit were not clear.

Several naphtha crackers in Asia have cut throughput to combat high naphtha feedstock costs but low petrochemical margins.

CPC also operates two refineries, one in Talin and another in Taoyuan, Taiwan, which have a combined capacity of over 500,000 barrels per day (bpd).

It also has a condensate splitter, which produces naphtha.

Despite the refineries and splitter, the company is net short of naphtha feedstock.

Ethylene and propylene are feedstocks for producing polyethylene (PE) and polypropylene (PP).

According to MRC's ScanPlast report, Russia's estimated PE consumption totalled 2,093,260 tonnes in 2019, up by 6% year on year. Shipments of all PE grades increased. PE shipments rose from both domestic producers and foreign suppliers. The estimated PP consumption in the Russian market was 1,260,400 tonnes in January-December 2019, up by 4% year on year. Supply of almost all grades of propylene polymers increased, except for statistical copolymers of propylene (PP random copolymers).

CPC Corporation, Taiwan, is engaged in the exploration, production, refining, procurement, transportation, storage, and marketing of oil and gas. The company provides fuel oil, including automotive unleaded gasoline and diesel fuel, low-sulfur fuel oil, marine distillate fuels, marine residual fuels, and aviation fuel; petrochemicals, such as ethylene, propylene, butadiene, benzene, para-xylene, and ortho-xylene; liquefied petroleum gas products comprising liquefied petroleum gas, propane, butane, and a propane/butane mixture; lubricants, motor oil, industrial oil, grease, and marilube oil; SNC products, including petroleum ether, naphtha, toluene, xylene, crude octene, methyl alcohol, normal paraffin, viscosity-graded asphalt cement, and sulfur; and natural gas.
Author:Margaret Volkova
Tags:Asia, PP, PE, crude and gaz condensate, PP random copolymer, propylene, ethylene, petrochemistry, CPC, Russia, Tayvan (Kitay).
Category:General News
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