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The Egyptian unrest has shaken the Middle East markets

January 31/2011

(ICIS) -- The Egyptian unrest has shaken the Middle East markets, with shares plunging in many countries in the region on Sunday. Meanwhile, the 192km Suez Canal has been operating as usual during the protests, with 45 to 50 ships passing through each day, a canal official told Reuters.

A company associate at Egyptian Petrochemicals Company (EPC) in Alexandria, Egypt, said that its refinery complex at Amerya was running as per normal, adding that email communications were still down on Monday.

EPC is a subsidiary of state-run oil firm Egyptian General Petroleum Corporation.

A Chinese polyethylene (PE) trader told ICIS that email and phone communications with an Egyptian producer had been down since Sunday. But any disruption in Egyptian PE and polypropylene (PP) supply would have limited impact as Egypt exports very little material to China, he said.

Egypt exported 9,351 tonnes of homopolymer polypropylene and 15,792 tonnes of high density polyethylene (HDPE) to China in 2010, according to China Customs data. These are 36% and 34% lower, respectively, than the 14,650 tonnes of homopolymer PP and 24,055 tonnes of HDPE exported in 2009, the data showed.


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