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Sulphuric Acid Market Presented at ISM Chemical Group Winter Meeting 2008 Galveston, TX February 28, 2008. firstname.lastname@example.org. Sulphuric Acid – a hot market!!. In the US prices have tripled to an all-time high in the last twelve months, from $50-70/st to $150-250/st cfr customer tank.
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Up to $30/tonne acid
SULPHUR - one tonne
SULPHURIC ACID - 3 tonnes
PHOSPHATE ROCK - 3 tonnes
one tonne P2O5
0.5 tonne NH3
DAP - two tonnes
2.5 to 3.5 tonnes acid per tonne copper.
Total Trade 11.8
Chile’s long-haul acid imports surge, even
with increased imports from Peru.
Surging world prices attract more sales outside the region.
Less to China.
Production(supply) development slower than expected as projects slow to come online on labor and cost constraints.
Canada and Russia exports fall in Q1 2007.
Strong demand by China.
Phosphate market shows strength.
Does this signal a fundamental change in pricing structure?
Higher costs raise price floor level.
Production restrictions will eventually be removed.
Domestic sulphur production in China will grow and reduce the need for imports.Sulphur Prices
Vancouver 25% decline
Russia 50% decline
$240/tonne November 1st
$360/tonne December 1st
$495/tonne January 1st
$600/tonne February 1st
Accelerating rate of price increases:
$54-$100 – elapsed time 5 months
$100-$200 – 4 months
$200 - $600 – less than 4 months
0.5 tonne sulphur per tonne DAP produced.
All forms; sulphuric acid, SOX, Ammonium sulphate, etc.
‘000 tonnes S
China as % World demand
Revised January 2008
Struggle to obtain offshore imports
Rail deliveries from Mexico depressed in 2006/7.
Mine strikes curtail acid availability for Southwestern US market
Sulphuric Acid Balance 2006
million tonnes H2SO4
- smelters 3.2
- elemental 1.6
- fertilizers 1.5
- non ferts. 1.3
Net Exports 2.0
Dom. Purchases 0.9
1980 - 2006
Taking account of Mexico’s exports out of the region and
Chile’s higher than expected net imports, Latin American
imports will be even stronger than forecast.
But only when global smelter acid surpluses need to be absorbed here
Or when sulphur-based acid is part of merchant supply.
Reason: the US will be supplanted by China as the ‘dumping ground’ for the next round of smelter acid surpluses.