Players in Southeast Asia report that they are expecting to see lower local PVC prices emerging in April in line with the declining trend in regional import prices as per the pricing service of ChemOrbis. Lower buy and sell ideas have been reported on the week while market activity is said to be limited as converters are sticking to the sidelines while waiting to receive new April prices.
Prices have already begun to move lower inside Malaysia’s local market as a domestic producer reduced their prices by MYR150-200/ton ($48-64/ton) this week. “Buyers are not very active in the market as they are expecting to see lower prices in the coming weeks,” a producer source reported. A converter stated, “We received some offers for locally-held Chinese cargoes at prices below the producer price level. Our stock levels are comfortable and we plan to wait for a while longer before making any fresh purchases.” A PVC pipe converter said, “We are sticking to the sidelines for now as we think that prices still have some room to move lower.
It is currently a slow season in terms of demand for our end products and we do not expect to see any major improvements in demand before May.” A source at an Indonesian producer said that they are thinking of lowering their April prices by $40-50/ton, adding that they plan to give their official announcements next week. “Domestic demand is still fairly good and we are confident that we will be able to conclude deals at prices equal to our new sell ideas. We believe that prices will bottom out in April and that demand will begin to improve from May,” a producer source stated.
In the Philippines, a source at a domestic producer expressed their April sell ideas with PHP2000/ton ($49/ton) decreases from March. “Trading activity is slow now as buyers are sticking to the sidelines in anticipation of lower prices for April. We will decide on our initial April pricing next week based on developments in the import market as well as changes in upstream costs,” the source reported. A Philippine converter in the pipe and fitting sector stated, “We are feeling comfortable with our stocks and are planning to make our next purchases around the middle of April. Demand is not very encouraging these days.”
In Thailand, buy ideas for April are beginning to surface with THB500-1500/ton ($17-51/ton) decreases from March according to ChemOrbis. A distributor based in Bangkok said, “Local demand was poor in March and trading volume was around 30-40% below normal as many converters elected to work down their existing stocks while waiting for lower prices in April. We anticipate that prices will fall by around THB1000-1500/ton ($34-51/ton) to match the losses seen in import prices.”
A pipe converter concurred, saying, “We are waiting to receive lower prices for April after we purchased only enough to meet our needs in March. We believe that April will be a slow month in terms of demand due to the upcoming Songkran holidays.” A PVC compounder added, “We think that local supplies are sufficient and we may elect not to purchase any cargoes for April if the offers we receive do not match our buy ideas. We expect demand to be sluggish in April due to the holidays.”