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US PVC Jan-Oct 2020 exports fall 9.5% on year: ITC

December 16/2020

MOSCOW (MRC) --  US exports of construction staple polyvinyl chloride (PVC) were 9.5% lower from January through October 2020 compared with the same period a year ago, reported S&P Global with reference to the latest US International Trade Commission data, released Dec. 8.

The US shipped out 2.13 million mt of PVC from January through October, down from 2.53 million mt in the same time frame of 2019.

The US exported nearly 2.99 million mt in all of 2019, or 37% of about 8 million mt/year of US PVC capacity.

The decline illustrates limited export volume availability amid tight supply because of months of reduced upstream chlor-alkali rates exacerbated by two force majeure events Formosa Plastics USA and Westlake Chemical declared in August that remained in effect Dec. 8. Formosa's force majeure stemmed from operational issues, while Westlake's was declared after Hurricane Laura's Aug. 27 assault on its operations in Lake Charles, Louisiana.

In addition, strong domestic demand amid a housing construction boom has further limited export volume availability, market sources said.

The tightness is global. Market sources said supply was limited in Asia and Europe, amid turnarounds and three ongoing PVC force majeure events in Europe as well. "It is on all sides," a source said.

Another source said the squeeze was expected to last into early 2021. "Typically if we get a shortage, it will last for six weeks, maybe two months. I've never seen a globally traded product be this tight for this long a period of time," the second source said.

According to MRC's ScanPlast report, Russia's overall PVC production reached 891,200 tonnes in the first eleven months of 2020, down by 0.3% year on year. However, two producers managed to increase their PVC output.
Author:Margaret Volkova
Tags:Europe, PVC, kausticheskaya soda, SPVC, Formosa, Westlake Chemical, Russia, USA.
Category:General News
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