Arkema increases prices of its amines range

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Arkema, a France-based chemical manufacturer, is increasing the price by 6% from April 1, 2014 on its amines range, as per the company's press release.

Thus, the price increase will be applied to the following products:

- N,N-diethylhydroxylamine 85% in solution (DHEA 85%);
- ethylamine range: monoethylamine 70% in solution (MEA 70%), diethylamine (DEA) and triethylamine (TEA).

These price increases are effective excluding existing contractual obligations.

These products are used as synthesis intermediates or active ingredients in many applications and industry sectors (pharmacy, fine chemicals, polymers, water treatment, coatings, etc.)

As MRC wrote previously, Arkema has recently announced a EUR150/tonne price increase for its whole Evatane range (high content ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA) copolymer) from April 1, 2014 or when contracts allow. This increase is due to rough market conditions, including the world wide unavailability of vinyl acetate monomer.

Marketed under the trademark Evatane, Arkema's EVA resins are used in highly diverse industrial applications, including hot-melt, cable, multilayer packaging film, technical polymer modification, solar panel, petroleum additives, bitumen and ink.

Arkema with annual revenue of EUR6.4 billion is a leading European supplier of chlorochemicals and PVC. Kynar and Kynar Flex are registered trademarks of Arkema Inc.

Altuglas International increase prices for its acrylic sheet and blocks

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Effective April 28th 2014, Altuglas International, subsidiary of Arkema Group, will increase by 9% the prices of its PMMA sheet and blocks in Europe, Middle East and Africa marketed under the brand name of Altuglas and Oroglas, reported Arkema on its site.

The price revision is the result of the continuous raw materials price increase.

Known as "acrylic glass", this polymer (polymethylmethacrylate) has exceptional optical properties, superior to that of glass. These properties have lead it to become the material of choice across numerous industries, from the automotive industry to construction.

As MRC wrote before, in December 2012, Altuglas International and NatureWorks, one of the leaders in the bio-plastics market with its Ingeo biopolymers derived from plants, signed a global co-marketing agreement. The agreement is designed to deliver a range of newly formulated bio-based, high performance alloys based on polymethylmethacrylate and Ingeo. The new materials will be marketed by Altuglas International as Plexiglas/Altuglas Rnew biopolymer alloys.

Altuglas International (a subsidiary of Arkema), world leader integrated in PMMA, is heavily involved in the field of engineered plastic - from MMA monomer to PMMA acrylic glass.

Arkema is a leading European supplier of chlorochemicals and PVC. Kynar and Kynar Flex are registered trademarks of Arkema Inc.

Oxea increasing plastisizer capacity in Europe

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Oxea, part of Oman Oil Group, says it is planning to increase its European capacity for its Oxsoft GPO dioctyl terephthalate (DOTP) by 50,000 metric tons by the end of 2015, said Plasticsnews.

DOTP is a general-purpose plasticizer used in a wide range of applications such as construction, automotive and flooring.

Oxea says it has signed an agreement with a third party in order to establish joint production of DOTP.
"The European market for phthalate-free plasticizers is growing rapidly. As a replacement mainly for dioctyl phthalate and diisononyl phthalate, DOTP is benefiting particularly from this development and our capacities need to be planned correspondingly," said Oxea’s project leader, Christian Boehmer.

We remind, Oman Oil Company (OOC), a commercial company wholly owned by the Government of the Sultanate of Oman, concluded the acquisition of Oxea which was announced in October 2013. With the acquisition, OOC aims to become a vertically integrated global chemical leader in the downstream industry.

Oxea is a global manufacturer of Oxo intermediates and Oxo derivatives, such as alcohols, polyols, carboxylic acids, specialty esters, and amines. These products are used for the production of high-quality coatings, lubricants, cosmetics and pharmaceutical products, flavorings and fragrances, printing inks and plastics. Oxea, based in Oberhausen, Germany, 1,400 people worldwide and had annual sales of 1.5 billion euros (USD2.06 billion) last year.


US chemical sector eyes 30% growth over decade

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Dow Chemical and other US chemical makers will boost output capacity 30% in a decade as they invest billions of dollars in factories to take advantage of low-cost shale gas, said Hydrocarbonprocessing.

The producers are adding 105 million metric tons of capacity by 2024, led by ethylene and methanol units on the Gulf Coast, Russell Heinen, a senior director at the firm, said in his presentation at the IHS World Petrochemical Conference in Houston. Growth will peak in 2017 with the addition of 23 million tons of capacity.

Gas prices that have dropped by half in a decade in the US are allowing producers to process liquids such as ethane into chemicals at a lower cost than other regions of the world. Dow is spending about USD4 billion to expand output in Texas and Louisiana.

"Companies are placing bets that the energy revolution is real and sustainable," Jim Fitterling, Dow’s executive vice president of feedstocks, performance chemicals and supply, said at the conference.

The cost advantage, combined with expanded production, will result in a five-fold increase in US earnings from ethylene, the world’s most used chemical and a key ingredient in plastics, Dave Witte, senior vice president at IHS, said in a presentation. Ethylene earnings will rise to USD31.6 billion in 2018 from USD6.9 billion a decade earlier, he said.

Lower energy costs are also attracting other industries to invest in the US, which will help consume some of the new chemical production. Still, exports will need to increase to keep US chemical markets balanced, Witte said.

US capital spending on chemical factories will peak in 2016 at USD14 billion, four times current levels, IHS’s Heinen said in his presentation distributed at the conference. Project costs will increase about 4%/year through 2020, led by a 5.2% annual increase in labor costs, Heinen said.

Global chemical capacity additions, led by Chinese coal-based production, will peak at USD120 billion this year and then decline as US construction ramps up, he said.

The Dow Chemical Company is an American multinational chemical corporation headquartered in Midland, Michigan, United States. Dow is a large producer of plastics, including polystyrene, polyurethane, polyethylene, polypropylene (PP), and synthetic rubber. The company's more than 5,000 products are manufactured at 188 sites in 36 countries across the globe.

BASF increases prices for butanediol and derivatives in Europe

MOSCOW (MRC) -- BASF, the world petrochemical major, has increased its selling prices for butanediol and derivatives in Europe, according to the company's statement.

Prices for the following products will be increased with immediate effect, or as existing contracts permit: 1,4 butanediol (BDO) - by EUR60/tonne, tetrahydrofuran (THF) - by EUR80/tonne, polytetramethylene ether glycol (PolyTHF) - by EUR80/tonne.

The price adjustment ensures that BASF can continue to offer quality products and services to its customers.

As MRC reported earlier, in early December, BASF already announced an inrease of selling prices for butanediol and derivatives in Europe. Prices for the following products rose, as follows: 1,4 butanediol (BDO) - by EUR50/tonne, tetrahydrofuran (THF) - by EUR70/tonne, polytetramethylene ether glycol (PolyTHF) - by EUR70/tonne.

BDO and its derivatives are used for producing engineering plastics, polyurethanes, solvents and elastic spandex fibers.

THF is a high-quality intermediate that serves, for example, as a specialty solvent in the production of pharmaceuticals.

PolyTHF, a registered trade mark of BASF Group in many countries, is used to make elastic spandex fibers for a large variety of textiles, including underwear, outerwear, sportswear and swimsuits. It also serves as a chemical building block for thermoplastic polyurethanes (TPU), which are used to make hoses, films and cable sheathing. Other applications include thermoplastic polyetheresters, polyetheramides and cast elastomers for the production of wheels for skateboards and inline skates.

BASF is the leading chemical company. It produces a wide range of chemicals, for example solvents, amines, resins, glues, electronic-grade chemicals, industrial gases, basic petrochemicals and inorganic chemicals. The most important customers for this segment are the pharmaceutical, construction, textile and automotive industries. As for BDO and BDO-equivalents, BASF currently manufactures these products at its sites in Ludwigshafen, Germany; Geismar, Louisiana; Chiba, Japan; Kuantan, Malaysia; and Caojing, China, and has an annual capacity of 535,000 tonnes.