Lukoil's net income USD 3.517 mln in the first quarter of 2011

(Lukoil) -- Lukoil published consolidated US GAAP financial statements for the first quarter of 2011. The Company's net income was USD 3.517 million in the first quarter of 2011, which is 71.3% higher y-o-y. EBITDA was USD 5.343 million, which is 43.3% higher y-o-y. Sales revenues were USD 29.626 million (+23.9% y-o-y). Positive dynamic of our financial results was mainly due to a sharp increase in hydrocarbon prices in the first quarter of 2011 compared to the respective period of 2010.


Louisiana's chemical industry returning to normal operations

(ICIS) -- Louisiana's chemical industry is returning to normal operations as water levels on the Mississippi river continue to fall from historically high levels, the president of a trade group said on Thursday. At New Orleans, the river is below flood stage, according to the National Weather Service.

At Baton Rouge, the river is still at major flood stage, but water levels have fallen from their peaks, the service said. Levels are now at 43.8 feet (13.4m), and they will continue falling through the end of the month.

Plants that were under high restrictions are starting to ship again, said Louisiana Chemical Association president Dan Borne. Some vessels have resumed their routes to Houston, the nation's petrochemical hub.

Dow Chemical has not said whether it has resumed normal operations at the docks at its sites in Plaquemine and St Charles. Also, Georgia Gulf has not said if it has lifted its sales allocation on phenol and acetone.


Asian petrochemical players to continue investing in green

(ICIS) -- Asian petrochemical players should continue investing in green energy and technologies to keep the industry sustainable, amid tighter environmental regulations and high energy costs, top industry officials said on Friday.

⌠Environmental protection, conservation and pollution should continue to be a key initiative for all businesses across our industry, said Preston Chen, chairman of the Petrochemical Industry Association of Taiwan.

As with many countries in Asia, Taiwan's government and petrochemical industry are working together to reduce carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions, said Chen.

He was speaking at the sidelines of the Asia Petrochemical Industry Conference (APIC), which is being held at Fukuoka in Japan on 26-27 May.

Chen added that the collaboration in Taiwan has also initiated many other efforts to reduce pollution and conserve energy.

Investments made by petrochemical industry players in green energy and other related fields, such as biotechnology, semiconductor and other high-tech industries inter-related with the petrochemical supply chain, is expected to contribute more to the future growth of the industry, Chen added.


Prices of naphtha and ethylene in Asia to decline

(ICIS) -- Prices of naphtha and ethylene in Asia are expected to be on a decline because of weak demand for downstream products - styrene monomer (SM) and polyethylene (PE), traders said on Friday. A possible prolonged shutdown at a cracker in Taiwan further dampens the outlook for naphtha, they said.

The intermonth naphtha spread between the first-half July and first-half August contracts was assessed at a backwardation of USD 3.50/tonne (EUR 2.50/tonne) - the weakest since 21 February, according to ICIS data. Naphtha prices were at USD 983.50-986.50/tonne CFR (cost and freight) Japan on Friday.

Reflecting the bearish market, South Korean's Yeochun NCC (YNCC) has bought 50 KT of spot naphtha a very weak premium of USD 1.50/tonne to Japan quotes CFR for delivery into Yeosu in the first half of July. ⌠Demand is decreasing and the outlook is bearish, said a naphtha trader.

Meanwhile, Asian SM prices slipped below USD 1.400/tonne CFR China this week amid poor downstream styrenic resins demand. SM buyers were hesitant to commit as they expect spot prices to fall further.

High density PE (HDPE) spot prices have weakened by USD 10/tonne to below USD 1.350/tonne CFR China, on the back of sluggish downstream demand and softer leading domestic prices. Buyers opted to monitor the market this week, while waiting for more offers to emerge next week. However, they reiterated that purchases would be limited to small lots.


Record volumes of PVC were imported to Ukraine in April

MOSCOW (MRC) -- In April, Ukrainian companies imported record volumes of PVC to the domestic market. The biggest growth of supplies fell at suspension, according to MRC DataScope.

In Arpil, Ukrainian companies imported about 18 KT of suspension PVC to the domestic market. Main growth of imports was stipulated by resin supplies from North America. Such a record volume of PVC supplies from USA (more than 11.7 KT) is partially caused by failures to deliver on time - the resin contracted yet in January was delivered to Ukraine only last month.

In May-June, serious reduction of suspension PVC imports from USA is expected which is caused by reluctance of many Ukrainian companies to contract resin in April-May because of high export prices.

Export prices for PVC from USA in June was reduced, on average, USD 50-70/mt. This may cause next wave of suspension purchases in North America.

Import supplies of resin from Europe in April grew only to 6 KT. High level of prices for PVC in Europe as well as limited export quotes of separate producers restrain growth of supplies of European suspension to the Ukrainian market.