In Egypt, polymer prices in the local market moved up during this past week despite the slowing demand ahead of the approaching Eid-al-Adha holiday as per the pricing service of ChemOrbis. These increases were mostly tied to the improved buying interest for locally held cargoes following the depreciation of the Egyptian pound against the US dollar. In addition, ongoing difficulties in opening letters of credit at banks also contributed to the increased demand for local materials as buyers have turned away from imports.
In the case of PVC, rising US import prices also contributed to the recent increases as distributors pointed to their higher replacement costs. A PVC pipe converter underlined the weekly increases of EGP200-300/ton ($26-38/ton) and complained, “Despite the rollover decision by one of the local producers for the second half of September, locally held PVC prices moved up. Distributors, complaining about their higher replacements costs, also highlight the increased fees that they have to pay at the customs following new regulations, in order to justify their increases.”
In the PP market, players reported increases of up to EGP500/ton ($64/ton) for homo-PP raffia and injection last week. A converter remarked, “The distribution market levels saw noticeable gains. Locally held supplies have recently become more limited since cargoes are taking a longer time to clear from customs due to new regulations. Apart from that, buying interest has also turned towards locally held cargoes following the appreciation of the US dollar while the upcoming Eid-al-Adha holiday has caused a slight uptick on demand. Nevertheless, buying interest, in general, still remains below normal levels.”
In the PE market, locally held PE prices moved up by EGP500-700/ton ($64-89) for LDPE film while LLDPE film increased EGP200-400/ton ($26-51) and HDPE grades recorded EGP100-900/ton ($13-115) hikes during this past week. Apart from aforementioned reasons for price increases; the fact that the local HDPE producer SIDPEC reduced their operating rates to 70-80% from 100% also played a role in the PE increases. Plus, some players reported seeing better HDPE injection demand compared to other PE grades. Indeed, the higher increase amount of EGP900/ton ($115/ton) occurred on HDPE injection.
According to ChemOrbis, in the PS market, locally held GPPS offers tracked a stable to EGP600/ton ($77/ton) firmer trend. A converter complained about increases and added that they cannot see a reason for these hikes. “Our end demand has improved a little and overall supplies are rather limited given the disrupted import activities and E-Styrenics’ restricted supplies. However, in general, availability is still in line with the current demand.”