PetroRabigh reduced rates at its LLDPE plant

(ICIS) -- Rabigh Refining and Petrochemical (PetroRabigh) is running its linear low density polyethylene (LLDPE) plant in Rabigh, Saudi Arabia, at reduced rates because of technical issues, sources close to the company said on Thursday. The nameplate capacity of the LLDPE unit is 600,000 tonnes/year.

The exact operating rates of the plant and the details of the technical problem could not be confirmed with the company. ⌠We are told that there will be reduced allocations for January shipments because of this technical problem, said an importer in east China.

At the same site, the company's 300,000 tonne/year high density polyethylene (HDPE) line and a 700,000 tonne/year polypropylene (PP) unit are running at close to 100%, industry sources said.


Slovnaft built LDPE plant of ┬300m investment

LONDON (ICIS) -- Slovnaft is to realise a ┬300m ($405m) investment programme that will include the construction of a 220,000 tonne/year low density polyethylene (LDPE) installation and the reconstruction of the company's 210,000 tonne/year ethylene plant, the Slovak producer said on Thursday.

⌠Due to modern technologies, the new production unit, LDPE 4, will not only be able to replace all seven of our polyethylene [PE] production lines, it will also ensure an increase in polymer production by 42,000 tonnes/year [from the present 178,000 tonnes/year], said Ivan Dezd, the director of Slovnaft Petrochemicals.
⌠The construction of the new installation is a key investment for the whole plastics market in central Europe and will ensure a long-term sustainable competitive advantage for our company, he added.

⌠The economic crisis also affects our company but we do not regard reducing manufacturing activities and employment as the rational solution, said Oszkar Vilagi, CEO of Slovnaft, which is owned by Hungary'sMOL Group.
⌠We orientate our business philosophy to social responsibility in this region, he added.
LDPE 4, due to be in operation by November 2015 after two years of construction work, would produce 30 types of PE, enabling Slovnaft to pursue new customers throughout the EU, Slovnaft added.

The reconstruction of the ethylene unit would start next year, the company added.
Proven German technology would be used for LDPE 4, Slovnaft said, adding that the investment programme would include ┬150m to modernise the company's heat plant and aim at reducing power consumption in the production of PE by 5%.
Between 500 and 1,000 people would be employed in rolling out the investment project, Slovnaft added.

Russia's WTO accession will not lead to imports surge

(europeanplasticsnews) -- The forthcoming and long-awaited entry of Russia into the WTO will result in a change in the balance of power in the Russian polymers market, but will not lead to a sharp increase in imports, as some experts predict.

According to Russia's obligations of WTO's accession, during the period of 2014-2018 years duties on the imports of products, made of polymers, including pipes, films, plates, sheets, packaging will be reduced from 10% to 6.5%.

In addition, the same reduction will be observed in the case of basic polymers, which duties will be also reduced to 6.5%.
The duty on the imports of polyethylene terephthalate will be reduced from 5% to 4% in 2013, while on polyurethanes to 6.5% by 2015, from the current 10%.
In the case of linear polyethylene and polystyrene the duties will be set at the rate of 6.5% by 2014.

The Polymers Summit ICIS-MRC - 2011 has been held today, on Nov, 30 in the Ritz-Carlton Moscow. The main topics of the reports were devoted to the development of petrochemical market and the strategy in the market of base polymers as well as launching new polymer productions.

The Polymers Summit ICIS-MRC - 2011 has been held today, on Nov, 30 in the Ritz-Carlton Moscow. The main topics of the reports were devoted to the development of petrochemical market and the strategy in the market of base polymers as well as launching new polymer productions.


Local PVC markets firm up in Southeast Asia

(chemorbis) -- Heading into December, new PVC offers and sell ideas started to emerge with increasesin the local markets in Southeast Asia. Regional producers either issued price hikes or expressed their hike targets for the new month giving the VCM shortage in the region as the main reason while relatively better demand provided some support for their targets.

Most Southeast Asian PVC producers are known to be non-integrated and have to procure their VCM supply from other sources. Many regional PVC makers expect to see higher upstream costs in December mainly due to limited supplies stemming from the disruption at Tosoh's complex.

Earlier in November, Japanese Tosoh shut its 550,000 tons/year No. 2 VCM plant after an explosion and decided to shut its No. 3 plant with a capacity of 400,000 tons/year as a precaution. The company's No. 1 plant with 260,000 tons/year capacity was already down for maintenance since the middle of October. The company has not announced a planned restart date for its plants although it may reportedly take around six months for the company to resume normal operations at its 550,000 tons/year No 2 VCM plant, while damage to the company's 400,000 tons/year No 3 plant was thought be less severe.

This week, an Indonesian PVC producer expressed their December sell idea with $50-70/ton increases compared to their November done deals after wrapping up their business for this month. The producer cited healthy demand in the local market as well as higher expected VMC costs in December as the main reasons behind their hikes. Another Indonesian producer reported concluding their November sales amidst satisfying demand.


Honeywell's UOP Selected to Provide Technology for Petrochemicals Production in China

(yourindustrynews) -- UOP LLC, a Honeywell (NYSE: HON) company, announced today that it has been selected by Zhejiang Shaoxing Sanjin Petrochemical Co., Ltd. to provide key technology to produce propylene in China.

The win marks the sixth time this year Honeywell's UOP technology has been selected by petrochemicals producers to produce propylene, which is used in the production of materials such as films and packaging.

"As petrochemicals producers in China increase production capacity to support rising demands, we are pleased to be at the forefront, offering the advanced technology needed to achieve the desired yields," said Pete Piotrowski, senior vice president for Process Technology and Equipment at Honeywell's UOP. "We remain committed to supporting the technology needs of petrochemicals producers worldwide, and we look forward to working with Zhejiang Shaoxing Sanjin on this project."

The new propane dehydrogenation unit will use Honeywell's UOP C3 Oleflex process technology to produce 450,000 metric tons annually of propylene. The unit is expected to start up in 2013 at Zhejiang's facility in Shaoxing City, Zhejiang Province, China. In addition to technology licensing, Honeywell's UOP will also provide engineering design, catalysts, adsorbents, equipment, staff training and technical service for the project.