4 Aug – Shell declares FM on propylene, ethylene after Pernis fire
Shell declared force majeure on propylene and ethylene supplies from Moerdijk, the Netherlands after a fire broke out at Europe’s largest refinery, Pernis, according to market sources. Since the beginning of this week, there were rumors about a possible force majeure on ethylene and propylene, which have been confirmed only recently by the parties who buy ethylene and propylene from this cracker.
This force majeure from the Moerdijk cracker stemmed from the disruption of naphtha supplies from Shell’s Pernis site. The cracker has a 900,000 tons/year ethylene and a 500,000 tons/year propylene capacity.
Shell had experienced a power outage at its Pernis facility in Rotterdam on July 29 due to a fire in a high voltage station. The restart date of the refinery is set for the second half of August at the earliest, as market sources reported. The Pernis site houses a production capacity of 250,000 ton/year for propylene.
A source from Ducor, as a propylene buyer from Moerdijk reported, “Shell has trimmed only a limited amount of our regular quotas following the issue. Therefore, we do not think that our production will be affected to a large extent, considering that demand will be slow in August. Meanwhile, they told us that they will be able to cover downstream demand smoothly as long as the force majeure doesn’t last for longer than 2 weeks.”
In mid-this week, Shin Etsu also declared force majeure on PVC output from its nearby site after Shell’s outage at its Pernis refinery.