ExxonMobil launches Mobil SHC hydraulic environmentally acceptable lubricant

MOSCOW (MRC) -- ExxonMobil has launched Mobil SHC Hydraulic EAL (Environmentally Acceptable Lubricant), a biodegradable synthetic hydraulic oil that protects equipment and can help improve energy efficiency of hydraulic equipment by up to 3.6%, as per FL Daily.

The high-performance lubricant also has low toxicity, making it ideally suited for equipment used in sensitive environments or industries where EALs are required, such as offshore oil and gas applications.

Mobil SHC Hydraulic EAL delivers a balanced technical performance. It meets EU Ecolabel standards, and is non bio-accumulating. It also features properties that can increase equipment durability and extend oil life, meaning it can even protect machines operating in rugged environments where deposit build-up can be an issue.

"For years, we have championed the capabilities of advanced synthetic lubricants. And the newest addition to our range of hydraulic oils, the Mobil SHC Hydraulic EAL oils, demonstrates why: it is environmentally acceptable, offers superior protection and potential efficiency gains," said Ayman Ali, Europe, Africa, Middle East, oil and gas marketing advisor for ExxonMobil.

Mobil SHC Hydraulic EAL has a shear stable, high viscosity index ensuring it can perform in a wide range of temperatures. The lubricant’s cold start capability can also help to protect pumps and reduce energy consumption at start up. Strong filterability and an ability to tolerate water contamination help to extend a machine’s oil filter life, leading to longer drain intervals.

As MRC informed earlier, ExxonMobil started operations at its new ethylene world-scale steam crackers in Singapore in early 2013.

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.

Petrobras chair takes leave after fuels-sale spat

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Petrobras chairman Murilo Ferreira is taking a leave of absence less than five months after he was appointed to help the Brazilian government-controlled company emerge from a mountain of debt and a corruption scandal, said Hydrocarbonprocessing.

Ferreira, who will continue in his role as CEO of Vale, requested leave from Petrobras board duties until Nov. 30 for personal reasons, the iron-ore miner said in an e-mailed response. His backup at Petrobras, Clovis Torres, also a Vale executive, will stand aside to make it easier for the board to nominate an interim chairman among current members.

"This could lead to greater concerns about the independence of the board and corporate governance," Bank of America analysts Frank McGann and Vicente Falanga said Monday in a note to clients. "We believe this could lead to additional investor caution towards Petrobras’ shares."

Divergences between Ferreira and management, led by CEO Aldemir Bendine, surfaced last month when Ferreira voted against selling a stake in the company’s fuel distribution unit before taking steps to improve performance.

Ferreira’s temporary board departure comes as Petrobras seeks to deepen cutbacks and productivity measures after prices collapsed and its credit rating was cut to junk. The Rio de Janeiro-based producer, formally known as Petroleo Brasileiro, declined to comment on reasons for the leave.

Prior to a rating downgrade by Standard & Poor’s last week, Petrobras had announced plans to reduce its operating costs by about USD12 billion through 2019. The company will also review its outlook for currency and oil prices, as the scenario has deteriorated since it unveiled a business plan in June.

Ferreira’s appointment in April, replacing Luciano Coutinho, broke with a tradition of political appointees. Previously, the chairman position was occupied by former finance minister Guido Mantega and president Dilma Rousseff during the government of her predecessor Luiz Inacio Lula da Silva.

He and Bendine were appointed to guide Petrobras out of a scandal involving graft and mismanagement at refinery projects that cost the company billions of dollars and contributed to the biggest debt load among oil producers globally.

As MRC informed earlier, Braskem signed a contract with state-run producer Petrobras for the supply of naphtha feedstock. The new contract, which continues the terms of a previous naphtha deal, is valid until the end of October.

Headquartered in Rio de Janeiro, Petrobras is an integrated energy firm. Petrobras' activities include exploration, exploitation and production of oil from reservoir wells, shale and other rocks as well as refining, processing, trade and transport of oil and oil products, natural gas and other fluid hydrocarbons, in addition to other energy-related activities.


Dow named to Dow Jones Sustainability World Index for 15th time

MOSCOW (MRC) -- The Dow Chemical Company was named to the Dow Jones Sustainability World Index as one of the top performers in the global chemical industry, marking the 15th time Dow has received this recognition since the launch of the index, as per Dow's press release.

This year’s announcement ties Dow as the longest-standing representative in the chemical category since the list’s inception in 1999.

With only 10 chemical companies named to the World Index in 2015, Dow is proud to be recognized for sustainability performance in the top 10 percent of the chemical industry. In addition, Dow received a perfect score of 100 on the Climate Strategy and Customer Relationship Management sections, demonstrating the Company’s unique strengths of working closely with customers to develop differentiated, science-based solutions to address today’s global challenges.

"Through our 2025 Sustainability Goals, Dow will help lead the transition to a more sustainable economy and society," said Neil Hawkins, Dow’s corporate vice president for environment, health and safety (EH&S) and chief sustainability officer. "From the ‘footprint’ of our operations, to the positive 'handprint' of our products, to the development of new ‘blueprints' for a more sustainable world, we are proud to be embarking on the third decade of rigorous sustainability goal-setting at Dow. Today’s announcement marks the latest milestone in our sustainability journey, and we are both proud and humbled to be named to the Dow Jones Sustainability World Index for the 15th time."

Dow remains committed to sustainability, setting the standard through public goal-setting, metrics and transparent reporting. Announced in 2015, the Company’s aggressive 2025 Sustainability Goals seek to redefine the role of business in society, focusing on unlocking the potential of people and science, valuing nature and collaborating courageously.

As MRC reported earlier, in November 2014, The Dow Chemical Company announced an increased divestiture target aligned to further enhance the value of its portfolio and support the company’s market-driven, integrated strategy. On track to complete its goal of realizing USD4.5 billion to USD6 billion in proceeds by year-end 2015, and with additional portfolio management actions underway, Dow is now increasing its divestiture target to USD7 billion to USD8.5 billion to be complete by mid-2016. Since 2013, the company has generated USD2.5 billion in proceeds, reallocating this capital to remunerate shareholders, fund growth and reduce debt.

The Dow Chemical Company is an American multinational chemical corporation. As of 2007, it is the second-largest chemical manufacturer in the world by revenue (after BASF) and as of February 2009, the third-largest chemical company in the world by market capitalization (after BASF and DuPont). Dow is a large producer of plastics, including polystyrene, polyurethane, polyethylene, polypropylene, and synthetic rubber.

Amec Foster Wheeler awarded contract for US methanol plant

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Amec Foster Wheeler has announced the award of a contract by Yuhuang Chemical Inc. (YCI), a US-based subsidiary of Shandong Yuhuang Chemical Company Co. Ltd (SYCC), for its first major project in the US, a 1.7 million tons per year world-scale methanol facility on the Mississippi River in St. James Parish, Louisiana, said the company on its site.

Under the contract, the value of which has not been disclosed, Amec Foster Wheeler will be providing engineering, project management, procurement and early construction services. The intention is to extend this into a full scope EPC contract during 2016 on mutually agreed terms.

This contract is for the first phase of YCI’s planned investment in US chemical facilities, which will be executed in a multi-phase strategy over the next decade. Construction is expected to begin in 2015, with the first phase of the methanol project beginning operations by 2018. The new methanol facility will use natural gas as its primary feedstock and utilise the Lurgi MegaMethanol technology developed by Air Liquide Global E&C Solutions, a subsidiary of Air Liquide Group.

Simon Naylor, Amec Foster Wheeler’s Group President for the Americas commented: "We are delighted to have been selected by YCI to help deliver this milestone project safely and sustainably, and look forward to expanding our relationship and building a strong partnership that will stimulate YCI’s future growth."

YCI is leading a growing trend of Chinese investment in US production facilities and helping develop a growing level of beneficial trade between China and the US.

As MRC wrote before, Foster Wheeler has been selected by Rosneft and ExxonMobil to undertake the initial phase of the front-end engineering design (FEED) for a proposed Russian Far East liquefied natural gas (LNG) project. Foster Wheeler is one of two companies to be awarded separate contracts for the initial FEED work prior to selection of a single contractor for the second FEED phase.

Investors show interest in buying Engro Polymer

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Local and foreign investors have shown interest in buying the majority shares of the Pakistan’s fully-integrated Chlor-Vinyl chemical complex Engro Polymer and Chemical, said the company.

An official informed that the five interested buyers bid Rs10.57 to Rs11.05/share for acquiring 340 million shares of the Engro Polymer and Chemical Ltd (EPCL). The official said the company is analysing the bid proposals to take a future action.

Engro Corp, the majority shareholder of EPCL, in a notice issued last week to all the three stock exchanges of Pakistan, confirmed the potential selloff of EPCL’s shares.

The industry official said one Faisalabad-based chemical player, which is the largest textile chemical exporter to India, a Lahore-based company, which is pioneer of synthetic leather manufacturing in the country, and the largest industrial giant and business tycoon showed keen interest in acquiring the EPCL.

The official said two Chinese firms are also interested to start their business in Pakistan and looking for investment opportunities in the country as the work on China-Pakistan Economic Corridor started with a full swing.

EPolymer recorded revenue of Rs12.417 billion in the first half ended June 30, 2015 as compared to Rs11.903 billion in the same period last year, according to its unaudited half-year report. In January-June, the company posted a loss after tax of Rs433 million as against profit after tax of Rs123 million in the comparable period.
The loss per share stood at Re0.65 for the first half 2015 as compared to a profit per share of Re0.19 in the same period of 2014.

The company, in its report, said higher sales volume could not be translated into higher earnings in the first half 2015 due to lower international PVC – ethylene core delta, higher domestic energy prices, duty impact on raw material and high cost raw material inventory carried from the last year.

The company produced 80 kilo tons of VCM in the first half to meet its requirements of PVC raw material.
Caustic soda market remained stable during the first half and the company sold 46 kilo tons of caustic soda in the local market, similar to the last year. The company produced 52 kilo tons of caustic soda during the first half 2015 compared to 56 kilo tons in the same period last year mainly due to operational issues experienced at the Chlor Alkali plant.

Five percent import duty on ethylene and EDC pushed up raw material cost and marred the company’s financial performance. The import duty on ethylene was cut to two percent in the budget for the current fiscal year of 2015/16, which is expected to support the PVC margins during the third quarter this year. The company expects local demand for PVC to remain strong and that of caustic to be stable.

As MRC informed earlier, Engro Polymer and Chemicals Limited (EPCL) would invest up to USD15 million to enhance the production capacity of PVC resin.

Engro Polymer & Chemicals Limited (EPCL) is the only fully integrated chemical complex in Pakistan. EPCL is a subsidiary of Engro Corporation, involved in the manufacturing, marketing and distribution of quality Chlor-Vinyl allied products and PVC under brand name "SABZ".