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ASCEND SUFFERES POWER OUTAGE AT USA SITE

December 2, 2020
European buyers of PA66 remain sensitive to any potential repeat of the critical shortage seen in 2018.

Ascend suffers a power outage at USA site, in Pensacola, Florida, according to reliable sources.

The outage has apparently caused the shutdown of the facility.

Ascend produces hexamethylene diamine (HMD) and adipic acid (AA) in Pensacola.

HMD and AA are the two main raw materials used to produce nylon 66 (PA66).

The impact this event will have on the PA66 market in Europe is for now unknown.

But the incident certainly increases the risk of a shortage of PA66.

After recent critical shortages of PA66, which increased prices up to €4,500/mt, buyers are highly sensitive to any potential disruptions to supplies.

However, while disruptions to supply are a concern, the PA66 market most probably will not see the same tightness seen in 2018.

During that time, several unexpected shutdowns happened over a number of months amid strong demand.

In 2020, demand is not as strong as it was a couple of years ago.

While activity has improved since the summer, it will take time for demand to get back to previous levels, especially for the most important market, automotive.

But this does not mean that concerns about supplies are unfounded.

The structure of the global PA66 market means severe tightness are still a real possibility.

Meanwhile, the USA is a major trading partner of PAs with Europe. Therefore, supply disruptions in the USA can also impact the European market.

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