Idemitsu, Mitsui streamline with joint ethylene production

April 6 (Daily Yomiuri Online) -- Idemitsu Kosan Co. and Mitsui Chemical Inc. have agreed to jointly operate their Chiba Prefecture ethylene production facilities.

The alliance of the major refiner and petrochemical firm is aimed at streamlining their production lines to make the pricing of their products competitive with those of foreign competitors. The companies said the joint operation would cut annual production costs by about 3 billion yen. The alliance also will consider uniformly operating the ethylene production facilities with a neighboring Idemitsu oil refining plant, which is expected to generate 10 billion yen in savings.

Idemitsu and Mitsui have set up a 50-50 joint venture, capitalized at 200 million yen, to operate two naphtha crackers with capacity of producing a total of 920,000 tons of ethylene annually.


Sumeet Industries commissions 100,000 ton continuous polymerisation PET chip plant

March 6 (plastemart) -- Sumeet Industries has commissioned a new project of 100,000 ton continuous polymerisation (PET chips) plant and 6MW gas-based captive power plant at an estimated cost of Rs. 150 crore. Sumeet is a leading Indian manufacturer of polyester chips, polyester filament yarn and polypropylene yarns. With this expansion, the company's POY and FDY total production capacity has increased to 56,500 tpa from 12,000 tpa.


Sunoco completes sale of polypropylene business

April 6 (Environmental Expert) -- Sunoco, Inc. said today that it has completed the previously announced sale of the stock of its subsidiary Sunoco Chemicals, Inc., comprised of its polypropylene business, to Braskem S.A., for approximately $350 million.

Speaking on the transaction, Sunoco Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Lynn L. Elsenhans said, ⌠The sale demonstrates our continued progress in realigning our portfolio of assets and provides capital to redeploy for future growth in our core businesses. We are grateful to the talented and dedicated employees who made the business an important part of the company for many years. We wish them well as they join Braskem.

Included in the sale were manufacturing facilities in Marcus Hook, Pennsylvania; La Porte, Texas; and Neal, West Virginia, which have the combined capacity to produce approximately 2.1 billion pounds of polypropylene annually. The sale also included a research and technology center located in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.


Q-Chem to export 35% HDPE from new plant to Europe, Africa

April 6 (ICIS) -- Qatar Chemical Co (Q-Chem) plans to export 35% of the output from its new high density polyethylene (HDPE) plant in Mesaieed industrial city to Europe and Africa, and 55% to Asia, a company source said on Monday.

⌠Only 10% of the output will be sold locally, the source added.
The company expects to start up the new HDPE and alpha olefins plants in Qatar, each with a capacity of 350,000 tonnes/year, by the middle of 2010, he said.

The HDPE grades produced by the new plant will increasingly focus on segments such as plastic drums and intermediate bulk containers (IBCs). ⌠There is a growing demand for these end use segments, the source said.
Alpha olefins are used in the production of polymers, including polyethylene.
Q-Chem is a joint venture between US major Chevron Phillips Chemical and state-owned Qatar Petroleum.

Access to Chevron Phillips' HDPE technology would give Q-Chem an edge in the high end European market, the source said. The plants will source ethylene feedstock from the recently started cracker at Ras Laffan, Qatar. The 1.3m tonne/year cracker, also known as the Ras Laffan Olefins Co, is jointly owned by Q-Chem (53%) and Qatofin (46%). Qatar Petroleum also owns the remaining 1% stake directly.

Qatofin is a joint venture between France's Total Petrochemical (36%), and state-owned groups Qatar Petrochemical Co (QAPCO) (63%) and Qatar Petroleum (1%).

Q-Chem has an existing 500,000 tonne/year cracker and 450,000 tonne/year HDPE plant at Mesaieed.


Investments in the market of polymers rolled back to the level of 2003

MOSCOW (MRC) - Total investments into equipment in the market of polymers in 2009 formed a little more than USD282 mln., which is less than one third of investments in 2008. This information is stated in MRC's Annual report.

Processors have received USD248 mln. (68% less than in 2008), polymer producers have invested about USD34 mln.

In conditions of reduction of crediting and flow-out of international investments a number of native producers continued the modernization of existing lines. PC ⌠Kuybyshevazot has made the largest investments into equipment - over USD30 mln.

The largest investments in polymer processing went into moulding equipment - over USD67 mln. Films production development is still enough attractive branch - over USD32 mln.

At the same time sheets and plates made of lightened PP actively conquer the market, replacing the other materials in wrapping and packing sectors and capacity production. So, in 2009 the production of feathered PP sheets by ⌠Rospolymer Ltd. started, not having any analogues yet. The capacity of installed extrusion line by Italian ⌠B. G. Plast is 20 tons a day.


Detailed analysis of events happened in Russian polymer market in 2009 and forecasts of development of this market in 2010 are presented in MRC's Annual reports.