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Moroccan sulphuric acid shipments near 1mn t in 1H24

  • Market: Fertilizers
  • 18/06/24

Moroccan state-owned fertilizer producer OCP's sulphuric acid shipments totalled 995,000t in the first half of the year, at a sharp increase from the 131,000t of acid imported in the same period last year, Argus' latest line-up data show.

And for next month, at least 100,000t is estimated to discharge at Jorf Lasfar until the third week of July.

The sharp increase on first half of the year is due to increased demand for sulphuric acid owing to strong phosphate prices, but also as new sulphur burner capacity came on line later in the second quarter.

OCP bought heavily from Europe in the first half of the year, sourcing about 80pc of its requirement from producers in the region.

But in the last month the supplier had to enter the Asian market to secure acid cargoes owing to limited uncommitted availability from European suppliers as key smelters undergo scheduled maintenance.

OCP's buying in Asia resulted in Chinese fobs rising to by 30pc on the week to $32.50/t cfr on 14 June, the highest level recorded since November last year.

Argus has confirmed six vessels sold to OCP in mid-to-late May for delivery during the second half of the year. Further buying was evidenced in June, when OCP purchased at least three more cargoes from Asian suppliers, either directly from producers or via a trader.

The continued appetite from the fertilizer buyer comes amid firm phosphate prices as India's kharif season is under way.

Argus' DAP index — a volume-weighted basket of DAP prices from the top-five export markets — has been trending upwards since mid-to late May, reaching 156 points on 14 June.


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