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ME petchem firms 'to see better margins'

Dubai, February 11, 2012

The petrochemical companies in the Mena region will see better margins within the next two quarters and operating rates are likely to inch higher even as a severe demand slowdown could test the exporting ability of the region, Credit Suisse said.

Credit Suisse upgraded Yansab (Yanbu National Petrochemical Company), Sahara Petrochemical Company and Advanced Petrochemical Company to "outperform" from "neutral," but downgraded Industries Qatar to "neutral" from "outperform."

"We believe the worst is over for margins of primary derivatives of ethylene and propylene," the brokerage said and raised its price forecasts on ethylene products and polpropylene.

"Margins of key primary derivatives of ethylene and propylene underwent heavy decline following the second quarter of 2011 - a trend that continued well into the fourth, in some cases to decade lows, noted Credit Suisse.

A Chinese slowdown would impact world demand and operating rates significantly for Mena manufacturers. While stagnation in Europe could affect Mena companies, it will not hit them as badly as it hits their European counterparts, the brokerage added.-TradeArabia News Service

Tags: Middle East | petrochemical | Credit Suisse | margin |

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