PTT Global Chemical to shut LDPE plant for maintenance in Thailand

MOSCOW (MRC) -- PTT Global Chemical is in plans to shut its low density polyethylene (LDPE) plant for maintenance turnaround, as per Apic-online.

A Polymerupdate source in Thailand informed that the plant is planned to be shut in end-August 2014. It is likely to remain shut for around one month.

Located at Map Ta Phut in Thailand, the plant has a production capacity of 300,000 mt/year.

We remind that PTTGC is likely to shut down its I4-No.2 cracker for maintenance turnaround in late September 2014. It is likely to remain off-stream for around one month. Located at Map ta Phut, Thailand, the cracker has a production capacity of 400,000 mt/year.

As MRC reported earlier, last year, Indonesian state-owned energy company Pertamina signed an agreement to purchase petrochemical products from Thailand’s PTT Global Chemical. The agreement serves as a pre-marketing strategy for Pertamina and PTT’s joint Indonesian petrochemical business. Under the agreement, PTT will deliver at least 5,000 tonnes of polyethylene (PE) and polypropylene (PP) products each month to Pertamina for sale in Indonesia.

Recently, Pertamina and PTTGC have announced that they would start joint shipments of PE to the Indonesian market from 1 July 2014. However, they will postpone their shipments to Indonesia till August.

PTT Global Chemical is a leading player in the petrochemical industry and owns several petrochemical facilities with a combined capacity of 8.45 million tonnes a year.

Lanxess pressing ahead with realignment, consolidating business units

MOSCOW (MRC) -- The Group-wide restructuring program initiated by Lanxess' Board of Management on July 24, 2014 will initially focus on the first area - the Business & Administration structure competitiveness, as per the company's press release.

Preparations for the following phases have already begun.

Lanxess will merge certain business units, reducing their number from 14 to 10. In addition, the company is streamlining its global administration by reducing the workforce on a cross-functional basis and consolidating specific areas of activity. The respective employee representatives will be involved in the process.

This more efficient organizational structure is designed to enhance Lanxess' market and customer focus and reduce costs. Lanxess is also aiming for savings on all cost types.

Lanxess will combine the Butyl Rubber (BTR) and Performance Butadiene Rubbers (PBR) business units to form the Tire & Specialty Rubbers (TSR) business unit. This takes account of the overlapping customer and regional structures in the established markets, as well as complementary strengths in the emerging economies. The future head of this business unit is Jorge Nogueira.

In addition, Lanxess will recombine the High Performance Elastomers (HPE) and Keltan Elastomers (KEL) business units under the name High Performance Elastomers (HPE). This, too, is prompted mainly by overlaps in the customer structure. Jan Paul de Vries will head the new business unit.

The Rubber Chemicals (RUC) business unit's specialty chemicals product line, the Functional Chemicals (FCC) business unit and the Rhein Chemie (RCH) business unit will be combined to form the new Rhein Chemie Additives (ADD) business unit. Bundling the additives businesses will open up new markets and attract new customers for Lanxess. The head of this new business unit will be Anno Borkowsky.

As announced in September 2013, Lanxess is examining strategic options for the RUC business unit's antioxidants and accelerators business lines. At the same time, the company is considering merging these product lines and placing them into the Advanced Industrial Intermediates business unit (AII). A decision in favor of one of these options will be made by the end of the third quarter of 2014 at the latest.

The second phase - Operations Competitiveness - will involve an "operational excellence initiative" to examine all production facilities with respect to market requirements and synergy potential. Par Singh will lead this initiative. A "marketing and sales excellence initiative" - led by Torsten Derr - will evaluate the effectiveness and efficiency of Lanxess' international distribution structures.

Lanxess has already taken first steps in the third area - Portfolio Competitiveness.

As MRC reported previously, in May 2014, Lanxess, one of the world’s leading manufacturers of synthetic rubber, undertook a complete rebranding of its butyl rubber products. A package encompassing a global ability to deliver products anywhere, anytime, extensive technical expertise, a focus on innovative solutions and customer demands - all this is what the new LANXESS X_Butyl brand stands for. The new brand family is called X_Butyl.

Lanxess is a leading specialty chemicals company with sales of EUR 8.3 billion in 2013 and roughly 17,000 employees in 31 countries. The company is currently represented at 52 production sites worldwide. The core business of Lanxess is the development, manufacturing and marketing of plastics, rubber, intermediates and specialty chemicals.

ExxonMobil Chemical awards EPC work to Jacobs for new Texas cracker

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Jacobs Engineering Group was awarded a contract from ExxonMobil Chemical to provide engineering, procurement and construction services as part of a multi-billion dollar ethane cracker project in ExxonMobil’s complex in Baytown, Texas, and associated premium product facilities in Mont Belvieu, Texas, as per Hydrocarbonprocessing.

Company officials did not disclose the contract value.

Under the terms of the contract, Jacobs is providing site enabling works and interconnections services for the two sites. Jacobs’ scope of work includes site preparation of 350 acres for the ethane cracker in Baytown and 100 acres for the product facilities in Mont Belvieu.

Jacobs is also working on the interconnectivity of the two sites by integrating into ExxonMobil’s existing facilities a new 1.5 million tpy ethane steam cracker in Baytown and two new high-performance polyethylene (PE) lines in Mont Belvieu, with a capacity of 650,000 tpy.

This aspect of the project requires approximately 63,000 feet of pipe to integrate into the existing Baytown facility and 43,000 feet of pipe to integrate into the existing Mont Belvieu facility.

"Our interface management and integration role is crucial to the success of this expansion project," said Jacobs vice president Mike Autrey. "We are excited to bring our execution skills and experience to support ExxonMobil in this important venture."

As MRC reported earlier, in late June 2014, ExxonMobil Chemical Company announced that it has started construction of a multi-billion dollar ethane cracker at its Baytown, Texas, complex and associated premium product facilities in nearby Mont Belvieu.

ExxonMobil is the largest non-government owned company in the energy industry and produces about 3% of the world's oil and about 2% of the world's energy.

Clariant to grow in Australia with new masterbatches plant

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Clariant, a world leader in specialty chemicals, announces plans to build its newest masterbatches plant in greater Sydney Area, Australia, said the producer in its press-release.

The new plant will mainly serve the Australian market with a full range of color and additive masterbatches, technically innovative solutions and services to meet the growing local needs. Construction on the plant is currently underway, with plans of commissioning in the fourth quarter 2014.

Working closely with Clariant’s New Zealand Albany site, the Australian plant will produce a full range of color and additive masterbatches tailored to local customer requirements, along with color matching and quality control capabilities.

"Asia Pacific region is one of Clariant’s focal areas for future development. The new Australian masterbatches plant will support our Masterbatches business to grow and to increase its customer service focus in the region," commented Mathias Lutgendorf, Member of the Executive Committee.

"Building a local masterbatches production plant is a key part of providing fast and reliable service to our Australian customer base, as well as to global and local brand owners," said Heiner Mehrtens, Head of RBL Masterbatches for Clariant Asia Pacific.

As MRC informed previously, in April 2014, Clariant Chemicals (India ) Ltd., an affiliate of Clariant AG announced the successful closure of the acquisition of Plastichemix Industries - a Gujarat based masterbatches business in India, with production facilities at Rania, Kalol and Nandesari.

Clariant AG is a Swiss chemical company and a world leader in the production of specialty chemicals for the textile, printing, mining and metallurgical industries. It is engaged in processing crude oil products in pigments, plastics and paints.

Petkim in the first half of 2014 has announced a net profit of GBR55 mln

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Petkim in the first half of 2014 has announced a net profit of GBR55 million; according to the first six months of last year, net profit has increased 10-fold, said Habermonitor.

The first six-month period, 2.44 billion grossing company's capacity utilization rate of 9%, reached 90%.
Petkim Petrochemical Holding AS the results of the study focused on operational efficiency and continuing net profit for the first half of the year increased 10-fold . GBR 5 million in the first half of last year , net profit of GBR49 million at year-end 2014, the congeners reported a net profit of GBR55 million in the first half .

Close to zero in the first half of last year, net profit margin came to 2.3%. In the said period, 27% achieved a turnover of GBR443 million to 2 billion 111 million TL in the company's gross profit , EBITDA was USD87 million . In the first half of the year rose 6% to 1 million 471 thousand tons of production increased , the capacity utilization rate rose above 90% last year took place in 9 points . Petka , just in Q2 35% increase to 1 billion 253 million TL turnover was signed.

Petkim CEO Saadettin Korkut said the market-oriented dynamic planning policy has led to the continuation of a rise in turnover, operational profit, gross profit and net profit figures.

The company’s profit still lagged behind market expectations due to a decline in operational performance, as the contraction in margins surpassed expectations, an assessment note released by Deniz Investment has said.

As MRC informed previously, the production capacity of the Turkish Pektim Petrochemical Holding where SOCAR, Azerbaijan’s state energy company has equity participation will increase from 3.2 million tons to 3.6 million tons in 2014. An increase in production capacity will be possible thanks to the improved capacity of ethylene and purified terephthalic acid (PTA) production enterprises. In particular, the ethylene production enterprise's capacity will increase from current 520,000 tons to 587,000 tons by late 2014. The PTA production capacity will increase from 70,000 tons to 105,000 tons which will require investments worth USD25 million.

Petkim is the leading petrochemical company of Turkey. Specializing in petrochemical manufacturing, the company produces ethylene, polyethylene, polyvinyl chloride, polypropylene and other chemical building blocks for use in the manufacture of plastics, textiles, and other consumer and industrial products.