|2019-09-04 来源： 中国石化新闻网|
中国石化新闻网讯 中国石化新闻网讯 据ICIS网站9月2日伦敦报道 最近几天，欧洲上游原料丙烯成本和丙酮现货价格之间的巨大差距（与5月创下的三年来的最低点相差不远）已经明显缩小。在一个令人不快的年份里，苯酚/丙酮生产商可以得到一些受人欢迎的缓解，正如他们所描绘的2020年规划那样。
王磊 摘译自 ICIS
Europe acetone gains kick start industry's 2020 phenol planning phase
The yawning gap between upstream feedstock propylene costs and acetone spot prices – not far off the more-than-three-year lows hit in May - has narrowed significantly in Europe in recent days, bringing some welcome relief in a vexing year for phenol/acetone producers as they sketch out plans for 2020.
While European propylene contract prices for September, assessed on Friday last week, declined by €50 to €860/tonne on a free delivered (FD) basis in northwest Europe (NWE), acetone spot prices firmed by €20-30/tonne to €440-500 FD NWE.
Propylene costs have been higher than acetone spot prices since late 2017, and acetone now sells for around half the price of propylene, forcing European producers to subsidise acetone with sales of co-product phenol.
This arrangement has been regarded as complicated and unsustainable by the industry, and higher margins on both products have been sought for some time.
Phenol is largely sold on a contractual basis in Europe as spot demand and supply has largely dried up this year, limiting producers' wiggle room to rebalance the market through price adjustments. Contracts are adjusted monthly based on feedstock benzene contract price movements, and an adder fee that is adjusted quarterly.
The next round of contract adder fee talks are due to begin this week, while the industry also begins its planning phase for 2020, and profitability is expected to feature in these discussions.
“We've been swallowing [low] acetone margins and [high] benzene prices for the whole of this year,” one producer said, referring to the approaching period of negotiations for the fourth quarter and planning for 2020. "We're not going to be looking for poor prices in Q4."
Producers' efforts to increase prices and improve margins have been undermined this year by weaker demand, particularly as a result of weaker performance of the automotive sector, which is a major recipient of phenol and acetone’s downstream products bisphenol-A (BPA) and methyl methacrylate (MMA).