London (GC Intelligence) — Most Styrene Acrylonitrile (SAN) players in Europe continue to experience supply increases. The market was already expecting a degree of supply increase because of the slowdown in activity in the summer. And this will most likely continue until September.
But the current supply increase is not only to do with seasonal factors. Supply has been increasing since the end 2018. And for the most part this trend has continued unabated. Moreover, as the slowdown also hit Asia, sellers tried and succeeded to export some of the surplus. This has been contributing to the increase in supply and pressure on margins in Europe.
For some buyers in Europe, some importers that have been absent since 2016 have reappeared. The latest trade data confirms this trend in imports. In a market where demand is down compared to last year, imports have increased. This is particularly pertinent when considering that demand was strong in 2018. April also shows an increase in imports from the largest trading partner, South Korea.
While a lower Euro will help domestic competitiveness, it will surely not reverse or even dent the current trend in trade. Therefore it is possible that competitive imports and ample supply look set to characterize the European market until the end of the year and possibly even 2020.
Note: For price levels, forecasts, and a more in-depth analysis take a look at the GC INTELLIGENCE® Market Reports…→