Overview

The ease of urea availability east and west of Suez has shaped the current trade flows of this key nitrogen fertilizer. Despite challenges posed by energy prices and military conflicts, key import markets such as India, Australia, and Latin America remain robust. But structural oversupply and the role of China as a swing exporter have led to price volatility as this fast-moving market seeks equilibrium, more so during seasonally high-demand periods. 
 
Our extensive nitrogen coverage includes prilled and granular urea, UAN, ammonium nitrate, and ammonium sulphate. Argus has many decades of experience covering the nitrogen market and incorporates our multi-commodity market expertise in key areas including ammonia and natural gas to provide the full market narrative.

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  • Daily and weekly nitrogen price assessments, proprietary data and market commentary 
  • Short and medium to long-term forecasting, modelling and analysis of urea prices, supply, demand, trade and projects
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Latest nitrogen news

Browse the latest market moving news on the global nitrogen industry.

Latest nitrogen news

Possible Canadian rail strike start delayed again


31/05/24
Latest nitrogen news
31/05/24

Possible Canadian rail strike start delayed again

Washington, 31 May (Argus) — The start of a threatened strike by some union workers at Canadian National (CN) and Canadian Pacific Kansas City (CPKC) has been pushed back again as concerns about fuel and food supplies rise. If it goes forward, the strike would begin sometime after 17 June at the earliest. The Canada Industrial Relations Board (CIRB), which is investigating federal government concerns, has postponed reply comments to 14 June from 31 May. Original comments were due by 21 May. If CIRB ruled on 15 June, the Teamsters Canada Rail Conference (TCRC) would have to provide three days' notice to CN and CPKC before workers could strike. But a strike may still may not occur for another 60 days . If CIRB issues any orders, the parties would likely not be in a position for a strike or lockout to begin for two months, CPKC said on 16 May. TCRC members had authorized a strike to start as early as 22 May. The railroads and union met with CIRB on Monday and discussed the comments filed by groups that could be affected by a strike. Canadian minister of labour Seamus O'Regan asked CIRB earlier this month to consider requiring some rail service to continue in the event of a strike to help avoid health and safety issues related to propane supply. A number of concerns arising from the comments have been identified, with many focused on the impact to commercial and economic interests, CIRB said. The theme of certain comments concerned delivery of supplies of propane and diesel to critical areas, including and remote communities in northern British Columbia. Transportation also is important to the province of Manitoba which has been using rail to deliver fuel because of a Winnipeg products pipeline. Other comments focused on domestic and global food security. They noted some sectors are dependent on rail for transportation, such as fertilizer, potash and canola products, CIRB said. The potential, immediate impact on the supply of water treatment materials for several municipalities also was highlighted. Other commentators sought advance warning of strike, asking CIRB to provide notice of when a decision would be made or that there be an extension of the notice required before a strike or lockout. Negotiations between the railroads and TCRC continue. CN and the union will meet next week from 4-6 June. CPKC declined to comment on talks but met most recently with TCRC leadership between 15-21 May. By Abby Caplan Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

Latest nitrogen news

Australia’s IPL fertiliser sale process 'advanced'


16/05/24
Latest nitrogen news
16/05/24

Australia’s IPL fertiliser sale process 'advanced'

Singapore, 16 May (Argus) — Australian chemicals and fertilizer producer Incitec Pivot (IPL) said the sale of its fertilizer business, first proposed last year, is now in "advanced negotiations". The potential sale of Incitec Pivot Fertilizers (IPF) to Indonesian producer Pupuk Kalimantan Timur (PKT) is subject to agreeing and executing final binding transaction documents, although there is no certainty that any deal will be reached or that any sale will occur, IPL said its financial report for its October 2023-March 2024 half year on 16 May. While IPL considering the sale of its fertilizer unit first emerged in July 2023, it was unclear who the interested buyers were. PKT is a subsidiary of state-owned fertilizer group Pupuk Indonesia Holdings and has production capacity of 2.74mn t/yr of ammonia, 3.43mn t/yr of urea and 300,000 t/yr of NPKs. Should the deal eventuate, the Indonesian producer intends to continue supplying fertilizers to Australia, support the retention of IPF's workforce and grow IPF's business in Australia, PKT confirmed to IPL. IPL reported a 77pc year-on-year fall in its first-half earnings before interest and tax (ebit) to A$10mn ($6.7mn). This was mainly attributed to the closure of Gibson Island that was producing ammonia, urea, granular ammonium sulphate and diesel exhaust fluid AdBlue, as well as reduced manufacturing performance at Phosphate Hill in Queensland with a capacity of 1mn t/yr of DAP, MAP and specialty products. But its distribution business was supported by firm demand and a well-managed fertilizer supply chain with its first-half ebit more than doubling from a year earlier to A$27mn, which partially offset a weaker manufacturing performance. By Huijun Yao Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

Latest nitrogen news

More Egyptian urea sold at $286/t fob for June loading


14/05/24
Latest nitrogen news
14/05/24

More Egyptian urea sold at $286/t fob for June loading

Amsterdam, 14 May (Argus) — Egyptian fertilizer producer Mopco has sold a further 25,000t of granular urea at $286/t fob for loading next month to a European market. The producer is now targeting $290/t fob. The deal follows business which emerged at a similar level today, with Mopco selling a total of 20,000t at $286/t fob to two trading firms, while fellow producer Alexfert sold 5,000t of granular urea at $287/t fob for June loading. Trading firms covering short sales across mainland Europe and Turkey have been driving these latest deals out of Egypt, with purchases taking place earlier in the week in the lower $280s/t fob. By Harry Minihan Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

Latest nitrogen news

Some rain in Thailand, urea demand lagging, prices drop


14/05/24
Latest nitrogen news
14/05/24

Some rain in Thailand, urea demand lagging, prices drop

Amsterdam, 14 May (Argus) — Recent rainfall in Thailand has yet to prompt a rise in urea demand, with buyers waiting for the delayed monsoon towards the end of the month, while distributors have cut prices in a bid to clear stocks after an import surge in the first quarter. The rains have arrived in Thailand after a period of dry weather from mid-April and distributors are anticipating an uptick in demand from local buyers, probably in June after the onset of the monsoon. But current rainfall has yet to translate into a rise in purchases. Distributors have cut retail prices by 300-500 baht/t ($8-14/t) in an attempt to reduce inventories of higher-priced product from March-April. Prices for urea in branded 50kg bags are around Bt15,000/t equivalent, with ex-warehouse levels down to around Bt13,000/t. Indications for imports have slipped to $310-320/t cfr, with Middle East product at the low end and southeast Asian material at the high. Urea imports soared to 722,000t in January-March, an 84pc rise on the year, with importers jumping back into the market as international prices rose from a bottom at the end of December. Thai imports averaged 331,000t in January-March 2021-23. The rainy season is expected to begin in the week starting 27 May, one to two weeks later than in a normal year, according to the country's meteorological agency. The rainfall forecast is expected to be close to normal and similar to 2023. But rainfall in the second half of the rainy season, August to the end of October, is projected to be 5pc higher than in a typical year. Thailand is one of the largest urea destination markets, usually receiving 2.2mn-2.5mn t/yr, offering producers a key outlet towards the end of the second quarter. Imports typically peak in May-July ahead of the monsoon season, which runs to October. By Harry Minihan Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

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