Europe PS buyers pay higher prices due to tight supply

(ICIS) -- European polystyrene (PS) buyers have been forced to pay increases of around ┬50/tonne ($68/tonne) in November due to the tight supply in the market, sources said on Monday.

The increase was short of initial targets, which were as high as ┬100/tonne, but it covered the increase in the upstream styrene monomer (SM) contract for November.

General purpose PS (GPPS) prices were trading at a minimum of ┬1,300/tonne FD (free delivered) NWE (northwest Europe) to smaller and medium-sized buyers, while large buyers enjoyed discounts. In July, GPPS prices were at ┬1,220/tonne FD NWE, but have risen steadily since then.

Some producers now saw PS as structurally undersupplied in Europe after permanent closures in 2009, which followed an earlier cull of installed PS in 2006. PS demand had picked up, supported by improved applications in the insulation sector, and some production problems coupled with good demand had tightened availability.

In spite of the tight supply situation in the PS market at the moment, styrene remained the main driver for PS pricing. Styrene monomer spot prices had fallen in November, leading to industry expectations of a drop in the December monomer contract price. Most PS sources expected any price erosion to be transferred to the PS market.


Weiss joint venture builds new plant in Hungary

(PRW) -- A German/Hungarian joint venture company has begun to construct a new injection moulded technical plastic parts plant at Gyor in north-west Hungary. At a launch ceremony at Gyor Industrial Park, company executives and local officials formally broke ground for Weiss Hungaria's ┬2.3m moulding and tooling facility earlier this month.

The plant, offering 3,500 square metres of production and office space, will include investment of ┬500,000 in new machinery and other equipment. Weiss Hungaria expects to expand production on the site in due course.

Weiss Hungaria is a partnership formed in 2007 by Weiss Plastics of Illertissen, Germany (60% stake) and the Hungarian company CBSZ (40%). The partners bought the 10,000 square metre site at the industrial park in 2008. As well as producing components for the German market, the Hungarian operation will improve Weiss's expertise in Eastern Europe, according to its CEO Jurgen Weiss.

The Gyor plant is due to start up by June 2011. This year, Weiss Hungaria is aiming for annual sales of around ┬4m and this is expected to rise in 2011 to between ┬5m and ┬6m, said the group.


With new line Russian pipe extruder extends its large-diameter capability

(Plastics Today) -- The supplier of the equipment, battenfeld-cincinnati, says the purchase by Russian pipe processor ZAO Tehstroi will be the first installation in the country of an extrusion line for large high-pressure plastic pipe.

With its order for a complete extrusion line to extrude high-pressure pipes sized up to 1600 mm in diameter, ZAO Tehstroi (Kazan) will virtually double its own production capacity and also extend the overall range of pipes produced for the Russian market in Russia.

At the beginning of 2011, the machine manufacturer, battenfeld-cincinnati (Bad Oeynhausen, Germany and Vienna, Austria), will install this extrusion line, the first in Russia able to extrude HDPE high-pressure pipes with diameters ranging up to 1600 mm. For ZAO Tehstroi, this will be its fifth extrusion line, with the four in place also from battenfeld-cincinnati.

Tehstroi has been producing pipes at its own facility for only about three years, but it has quickly climbed to a position among the country's leaders in the market for gas and water pipe with an annual throughput of some 22,000 tonnes. This new line will increase the processor's production capacity to about 45,000 tonnes/yr and its market share in Russia to more than 20%.


EPS imports to Russia reduced in October

MOSCOW (MRC) -- In October EPS imports to Russia made up 9,8 KT, according to MRC DataScope.

October EPS import supplies to Russia were 5,2 KT or 34,7% less compared to September supplies.

Summarizing the ten months the volume of EPS imports supplies exceeded 81 KT which is 24% more compared to the supplies during the same period last year.

It is expected that along with the start-up of EPS production in Perm the dependence of the Russian market will be reduced on average by 4,5 KT a month. New production on the basis of SIBUR-Himprom facilities (Group of the companies SIBUR) was launched mid-November, but because of technical failures it was suspended.

For more detailed information on polystyrene market see DataScope.


RadiciGroup's new sustainability report

(China Plastic&Rubber Journal) -- RadiciGroup, the Italian company with business in chemicals, plastics, synthetic fibers and textiles, has released its 2009 Sustainability Report, an annual overview of the group's activities and achievements in the field of corporate social responsibility.

RadiciGroup is an industrial enterprise with a fully vertically integrated polyamide production chain. And full vertical integration is the aspect the group intends to leverage in order to enhance the environmental sustainability of its entire production chain: from polymerization to downstream plastics compounding and synthetic fibers production.