Styron announces price increases for polycarbonate and PC compounds and blends in Europe

(styron) -- Styron Europe GmbH and its affiliate companies in Europe announced price increases for all CALIBRE polycarbonate and EMERG polycarbonate compound & blends products. Effective April 1, or as existing contract terms allow, the price for these products will rise by EUR 250 .

This price increase - which comes as a result of the further escalating costs of key raw materials associated with the manufacturing of CALIBRE and EMERGE - follows a similar Styron announcement on January 24.

Styron is a leading global materials company, dedicated to innovate and deliver for its customers. Styron's unique and balanced product portfolio brings together plastics, rubber and latex businesses that share feedstocks, operations, customers and end users. The company benefits from global scale, a long-standing tradition of unrivaled customer relationships and a robust innovation pipeline.

Styron has approximately USD5 billion in revenue, with 20 manufacturing sites in all geographies. Styron's 2100 employees are committed to listen to customers' needs and provide them with innovative and sustainable solutions in markets such as appliances, automotive, building and construction, carpet, commercial transportation, consumer electronics, consumer goods, electrical and lighting, medical, packaging, paper and paperboard, rubber goods and tires.

Russia may raise April crude export tax up to 12% on Urals gains

(bloomberg) -- Russia, the world's biggest oil producer, may increase its export duty on most crude shipments by as much as 12 percent from April 1 after Urals prices reached its highest level since 2008.

The standard duty may rise to USD458.50 to USD461.70 a metric ton, or USD62.55 to USD62.99 a barrel, according to Bloomberg calculations based on Finance Ministry data. That compares with USD411.20 a ton in March.

The discounted rate on some Eastern Siberian and Caspian Sea oil may rise in April to within a range of USD239.90 to USD242.20 a ton, compared with USD204.40 this month.

Russia bases the export duties on the average Urals crude price from the 15th day of one month to the 14th of the next. Urals (RUOIEX%), Russia's benchmark export blend, may average USD123.03 to USD123.745 a barrel during this period, Alexander Sakovich, a Finance Ministry adviser, said by phone today. On March 1, Urals exceeded USD125 a barrel, the highest since July 2008. In the previous monitoring period, the crude price averaged USD112.22, according to the ministry.

Prime Minister Vladimir Putin must sign off on the levies before they take effect. The government lowered the crude tax rate applying a coefficient of 60 percent, down from 65 percent, and unified the duty on most refined products at 66 percent of that levy since October.

The duty for middle distillates and heavy products may grow to within a range from USD302.60 to USD304.70 a ton next month, from USD271.40 in March.

A gasoline tax that Putin imposed from May to counter domestic shortages may be within a range from USD412.70 to USD415.50 a ton, from USD370.10 this month. That is 90 percent of the crude oil duty.


World's largest bottle-to-bottle plastic recycling plant to start in California

(carbonliterecycling) -- California based bottle-grade raw material producer Carbon LITE has opened the world's largest bottle-to-bottle plastic recycling plant in Riverside, California.

The company said that it specialises in processing used plastic bottles into bottle-grade PET pellets that can
then be used to manufacture new plastic beverage bottles, conserving virgin resources, reducing waste sent to
landfill and capitalising on the energy already invested in making existing plastic products.
According to carbonLITE, the 220,000 sq-ft (20,440 square metre) plant will recover more than two billion plastic
PET bottles annually from California's Kerbside and Redemption Value programs.

Most plastic bottles collected in California were previously exported to China and downcycled into polyester fibre.
By recycling two billion PET bottles (12 fl oz) every year, this cutting-edge facility is helping America save 48
million gallons of gas," commented Jared Blumenfeld, regional administrator for the Environmental Protection
Agency's Pacific Southwest."


Sumitomo to start Russian petrochemical project

(polyestertime) -- The Japanese Sumitomo Corporation is considering building a gas processing plant to produce propylene from natural gas in the Khabarovsk region of Russia.
The company is currently negotiating with the authorities of the Khabarovsk region and has already started
developoing a feasibility study for the project.

The financial and technical details of the project were not disclosed. There is a possibility that the new plant
could be built in the Komsomolsk, or Ulchi areas of the Khabarovsk region.
Sumitomo could become the second Japanese investor to express its interest in petrochemical projects in the
Russian Far East in recent months.

Last year, Marubeni, another Japanese company, announced plans to build a petrochemical complex in the
Russian city of Nakhodka, in cooperation with the Russian oil producer Rosneft.

In addition to the Far East project, in January this year Marubeni announced its intention to build a plant to
produce aromatic hydrocarbons, polyethyleneterephthalate and terephthalic acid in Tatarstan, one of the most
economically developed regions of Russia.


China mulls investment in several petrochemical projects in Iran

(plastemart) -- China plans to invest in 20 petrochemical projects in Iran lauding the country's advancement in petrochemical fields, as per FNA. China is Iran's top trade partner.

Iranian oil minister said. "Based on the latest agreements, Chinese investors intend to use such credit line for investing in 20 petrochemical projects in Iran," Qassemi said, expressing the hope that the projects would yield result sooner than the declared timeline. Beijing has also significantly increased its presence in Iran's oil and gas sector by signing a series of contracts worth up to 40 billion dollars in the past few years.

China boosted its oil imports from Iran by 30% in 2011 despite the West's pressure on the world's second largest economy to lower economic ties with Iran. China's crude oil imports from Iran have amounted to 27.76 million metric tons in 2011, Chinese General Administration of Customs announced in February. The figure shows that the country traded in nearly 557,000 barrels of oil from Iran on a daily basis last year.