Taiwan's Formosa Plastics faces fines but not plant closure over pollution

TAIPEI (Taiwan News) -- Formosa Plastics could be forced to pay a fine of up to NT$150 million (US$5 million) for a case of pollution in Kaohsiung County but not closure of its factory, reports said Tuesday. Test results published by the media on March 21 showed the presence near the factory in Jenwu of carcinogenic chemicals such as vinyl-chloride monomers and hydrochlorofluorocarbons at levels exceeding official health limits by up to 300,000 times (read MRCplast.com from march 31).

The Environmental Protection Administration was drawing up eight possible scenarios for sanctions against the company which could end with the county government levying a fine of between NT$38 million (US$1.2 million) and NT$150 million, according to the Chinese-language United Evening News.Environmental groups welcomed the plans for a heavy fine, but also demanded the closure of the Jenwu plant. The heavy fines showed the EPA's determination, but since the pollution at the factory was still at a manageable level, there was no need to order its closure at present, EPA Minister Stephen Shen said. Any similar incident in the future would lead to an order to halt work at the Jenwu factory, he added.

Formosa Plastics first knew about the grave pollution of underground water in December 2003, but never told the authorities, according to Shen. The company didn't take action against the problem until the EPA inspected the plant last year and failed to clean up the toxic substances already present in the soil, he said. The size of the fine was based on the cost of the company's negligence and of the actions it had failed to take, Shen said. A commission of experts would still have to draw up an overall plan for neutralizing the impact of the pollution and would base the final size of the fine for Formosa Plastics on the cost of that plan, he said. The longer the company took to solve the problem, the higher the fine would be, according to Shen.

Because experts still had to confirm the precise nature of the pollution, the EPA would not impose the fine directly but ask the Kaohsiung County Government to do so, he added. In the first example of a heavy fine over environmental pollution, the EPA imposed a direct fine of more than NT$100 million on the Kuanyin Industrial Zone in Taoyuan County.

MRCMRC Reference


The share in the Russian market in 2008:
PVC-S - 3.0%;

PP - 0.4%.

Annual growth sales in Russia :
PVC - 79 % (over the last year) ;

PP - 272 % (over the last 3 years).

Supply by processing technologies:
profile extrusion

film extrusion

Faerch Plast will use Sabic PP in new product solutions

(plastemart) -- New product solutions in food packaging (Modified Atmosphere Packaging) are being developed by Danish converter Faerch Plast using Sabic PP. One of Faerch Plast's key challenges is to develop packaging that is friendlier for the environment without compromising on technical requirements and trendy design. As well as the appearance of packaging, its ⌠green aspect is becoming increasingly important for consumers, more and more of whom are consciously choosing to buy environmentally friendly products and packaging. Sabic understands this trend and has designed the homopolymer grade Sabic PP 527K to meet these requirements.

⌠Our customers are looking for lightweight packaging with an eye-catching design and an excellent impact. By using the Sabic PP range for Thermoforming we can meet and even surpass these expectations, thus supporting and improving our customers' brand awareness, says Merete Rosendahl, Development Manager, Faerch Plast.

This new generation of PP for thermoforming offers converters down gauging possibilities of up to 10-15% which provides them with significant material and energy savings. Without compromising on quality and safety, these grades are the product of choice when it comes to sustainable production and consumption

MRCMRC Reference

Sabic. The share in the Russian market in 2008:
PE - 0.2%;
PP - 0.4%;
PS - 0.2%.

Annual sales growth in Russia over the last 5 years:
PE - 33%;
PP - 62%.

LDPE import in Ukraine down 11%

MOSCOW (MRC) - Import of low-density polyethylene (LDPE) into Ukraine went down by 11% (to 24.03 kt) in January- March 2010 comparing with same period last year - according to MRC DataScope report.

In March Ukrainian companies significantly increased LDPE imports. By March results 10.12 kt of polyethylene were delivered into Ukrainian market.

The main import income was from Belarus (almost 2 times comparing with February 2010). LDPE supplies from Croatia, Romania and Serbia have also increased. Ukrainian companies develop PE supplies into the domestic market, however, supply of the material is limited.

Deficit in shrinkable film production is being observed in LDPE market. European and Belarusian PE is presented in small volumes.


More detailed information is presented in MRC DataScope report.

Songwon undergoes restructure

(adsalecprj) -- Songwon, an additives supplier to the polymer industry, announces a new business structure for China which will be effective in the second quarter of 2010 and will create the foundation from which Songwon will continue to build its presence and customer relationships in China. The new structure will be based on Songwon China Limited, a wholly owned entity of Songwon Industrial Co., Ltd. Songwon China Limited will be based in Hong Kong and will form the cornerstone from which other Songwon entities and JV's will be established.

Songwon has developed a successful presence in China in recent years achieving a leading position in antioxidants for PVC, ABS and specialty stretch fibres. Customer demand for its wide range of products up till now has been served by SSBC, Songwon Brilliant Chemicals Co., Ltd., a manufacturing and sales JV for all liquid formulations, and by Brilliant Chemicals Ltd. as a distribution partner for all other Songwon products sales.

The Songwon group of companies in China will initially comprise of:

- Songwon China Limited,which will be the shareholder in all Songwon companies in China

- Songwon Shanghai Trading Ltd. which will be responsible for the sales of Songwon non-liquid products to the Chinese market. It will also manage the export of all Songwon products to be sourced in China to meet the needs of customers globally.

- SSBC, located in Shanghai, will be transformed into a fully owned manufacturing company by Songwon China Ltd. and will continue to be responsible for the manufacture and sales of liquid products for the China market.

- Songwon is in the process of developing relationships with partners in China that will allow it to have better access to the fast growing market in China and potential manufacturing assets supporting its strategy to offer a full range of Polymer Additives to its global customer base. Songwon China Ltd. will be Songwon's investement arm in all future JV's in China.


Ineos refinancing given green light

(Ineos) -- INEOS, the UK's largest private company, which owns the Grangemouth oil refinery in Falkirk, has won backing for its latest 1 billion (877m) refinancing.

There had been concerns that a number of investors would block the restructuring, which was proposed less than a year after a previous agreement with the firm's creditors.

Last week 90 per cent of lenders gave their support to the refinancing plan.

MRCMRC Reference

Ineos is a petrochemical group.
In Russia Ineos's interests are represented by Ineos Polyolefins and IneosChlorVinyls.

The share in the Russian market in 2008:
PVC - 4.5%;

polyethylene - 1.9%
(HDPE - 2.8%, LDPE - 1.2%);
polypropylene - 1.4%
(PP-random - 22.1%, PP-impact - 2.0%);
polystyrene - 0.9%.

Imports by polymers processing technologies:
profile extrusion;
pipe extrusion;
film extrusion;
injection molding.