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Japanese ethylene production rose 0.1% in March

April 07/2011

(Reuters) -- Japanese ethylene production rose 0.1% in March from the same month a year earlier, although some plants were shut after the March 11 earthquake, government data showed on Thursday. Ethylene output totalled 514.8 KT last month compared with 514.1 KT a year earlier, the Ministry of Economy, Trade and Industry said. March output was down 15.0 percent from 605.3 KT in February, when no plants were shut for maintenance.

There was one maintenance-related plant shutdown in Japan in March, while three plants were shut in the same month last year, METI said.

Maruzen Petrochemical Co Ltd and JX Nippon Oil & Energy Corp, an oil refining unit of JX Holdings , have restarted their quake-shut naphtha crackers, leaving two crackers still shut at the Kashima plant operated by Mitsubishi Chemical Corp, with a total ethylene making capacity of 828 KTa.

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