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Formosa Plastics USA to delay LDPE unit, shutdown HDPE blowmolding unit: sources

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Formosa Plastics USA to delay LDPE unit, shutdown HDPE blowmolding unit: sources


LDPE line start up delayed to Oct. 30

HDPE blowmolding unit to shut down for 30 days

Houston — Petrochemicals producer Formosa Plastics USA may delay the start up of its low density polyethylene line in Point Comfort, Texas, until Oct. 30, several sources told S&P Global Platts Oct. 28.

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In addition, sources also said Formosa Plastics will shut down its high density polyethylene blowmolding unit in Point Comfort, Texas for maintenance on Oct. 30 for 30 days.

The company was not available for immediate comment on the delay or shutdown. Spokesperson Fred Neske last said the project was "still ongoing," in an email on Aug. 14 to Platts.

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"I don't think this is going to shift pricing in any way," one trader source said. "HDPE blowmolding has been tight (for exports) for several months and pricing will continue to be very firm," the source added.

The HDPE blowmolding unit has a capacity of 200,000 mt/year and was previously scheduled for a maintenance in October 2020, sources told Platts on June 11.

The startup of the unit was previously delayed to late-July or early-August from April, a spokesman said on May 8. Formosa had originally planned to bring the unit online by late-2019.

Platts assessed US low density polyethylene down $11 on the week Oct. 28 at $1,124-$1,146/mt (51-52 cents/lb) FAS Houston and HDPE blowmolding was assessed flat week on week at $1,058-$1,080/mt (48-49 cents/lb) FAS Houston.

Both the US domestic LDPE and HDPE blowmolding contracts were assessed at a rollover for October at 74.5-75.5 cents/lb ($1,642.43-$1,664.47/mt) delivered railcar basis and 63-64 cents/lb ($1,388.90-$1,410.94/mt) delivered rail car basis.