DynaMarkets Monitor - Edition 3/2020 (excerpt)
The chemical tanker market was also affected by the industrial slowdown in China through January and February, although to a lesser extent than the crude and oil products markets. Wider disruption in the palm oil export markets in Asia continues with, so far, no movement from India in terms of the ban on Malaysian palm oil, both crude and refined. The change of government in Malaysia may help the situation in the coming weeks although progress will likely be dented by impending curfews and social distancing policies aimed at stopping the spread of the COVID-19 virus. Additionally, the chemical trade between the US and China was also expected to pick up under the obligations of the phase one trade deal, particularly for US ethanol, although this will likely be pushed back to the second half of 2020 in light of the ongoing market volatility.