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Asia PX may extend falls as May supply grows

April 12/2011

(ICIS) -- Spot paraxylene (PX) prices in Asia are under strong downward pressure with a flood of supply seen hitting the market in May, market players said on Tuesday.

Offers for May deliveries are at around USD1.630-1.635/tonne (EUR 1.125-1.128/tonne) CFR (cost and freight) Taiwan and/or CMP (China Main Port), while buying notions from end-users are pegged slightly under USD 1.600/tonne CFR Taiwan and/or CMP, market sources said.

PX prices have fallen nearly 10% since mid-March, when it reached a record high of USD 1.815/tonne (EUR 1.252/tonne) CFR (cost & freight) Taiwan and/or China Main Port (CMP), according to ICIS data.

Supply will get a boost from South KoreaТs S-Oil, which just achieved on-spec aromatics production at its new unit in Onsan. The plant can produce 300 KTa of benzene and 900 KTa of PX.

Meanwhile, Japanese aromatics major, JX Nippon Oil & Energy, is expected to resume 100% delivery of contracted PX volumes in May, although its available spot material will likely remain limited.

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