News: Iran Mercantile Exchange (IME), a commodities exchange located in Tehran, is planning to launch three new polymers futures contracts in the coming two-three months, reports Platts, citing an unnamed exchange official. The official revealed that contracts will include various grades of polyvinyl chloride and polyethylene, but declined to disclose the exact specifications. The exchange currently operates close to 43 petrochemicals contracts for different grades of aromatics, polymers and specialty chemicals. The IME also intends to unveil agriculture products futures contracts such as soybean during the launch of the polymers futures contracts, the official added.
BMI View: Improving risk means that Iran's petrochemicals rating has improved by 0.4 points to 59.1 points. This further secures its fifth place position BMI's Middle East and Africa Petrochemicals Risk/Reward Ratings, putting it 1.7 points behind Kuwait and 1.6 points ahead of Israel. The operating climate remains difficult, but the promise of an easing of sanctions is supporting Iran's outlook. In the long term, much will depend on the extent of Iran's rehabilitation in the international community, and there is a risk that the sanctions regime may not be relaxed sufficiently to stimulate the export growth the country needs to justify planned capacity expansion.