Azeri SOCAR to Expand in Asia

(PSG) -- Socar Trading plans to expand its trading presence in Asia into fuel oil and naphtha next year. This would imply leasing storage capacities in Singapore.

The Azeri state-owned oil trader will also make its Singapore office fully responsible for developing its crude oil trading business in Asia, including increasing its market share, particularly via term contracts, Arzu Azimov, vice-president of trading and operations, said in an interview with Reuters.

The expansion will also see Socar Singapore arbitraging fuel oil from West to East and supplying marine fuels in the world's largest bunkering port as well as securing oil storage facilities.

The company currently trades around 200,000 tonnes of fuel oil a month, mainly in the West, but plans to increase this volume by sourcing greater quantities of the residual fuel from refineries in the Mediterranean, Azimov said.

Socar earlier made an investment to build a 650,000 cubic metre oil storage terminal in the United Arab Emirates port of Fujairah, expected to be operational in about 18 months.


Borealis got Frost & Sullivan automotive innovation award

(Borealis) -- Borealis, a leading provider of chemical and innovative plastics solutions, has received the Frost & Sullivan 2010 Global New Product Innovation Award in the category Automotive under the Hood Plastics. The award recognises the unique capabilities of Borealis Xmod GB306SAF polypropylene (PP) compounds, which significantly lower system and production costs for automotive system suppliers and manufacturers (OEMs).

Borealis Xmod GB306SAF is a pioneering high stiffness, 36% glass fibre reinforced engineered PP compound. It is specifically tailored for air intake manifolds (AIMs) and other technical under the hood components, exposed to high loads and peak temperatures of up to 140╟C. Vibration resistance, long-term chemical and heat resistance, combined with high fatigue and a broad operating temperature are among the material's key characteristics.

Additionally to meeting the customers need for component cost reduction, Borealis Xmod GB306SAF offers improved dimensional stability and therefore more consistent processing results compared to existing plastics solutions for AIMs.


Borealis net profit of EUR 54 million

(Borealis) -- Borealis, a leading provider of chemical and innovative plastics solutions, announces a net profit of EUR 54 million for the third quarter of 2010. The result exceeds the performance in the third quarter of 2009 by 15%, although profitability reduced from the second quarter of 2010 largely due to the impact of start-up and turnaround activities.

The Borouge 2 project in Abu Dhabi, UAE, is well on track and the expanded plant is starting-up as planned with all olefin and polyolefin units operational by the end of the third quarter. With this investment of approximately USD 5 billion, Borouge expands its product offering into polypropylene while tripling its overall polyolefins capacity to over 2 million tonnes per year.

The Borouge 3 project is on schedule with land preparation activities adjacent to the Borouge 2 site almost completed. While still in start-up mode, the new LDPE plant in Sweden has initially demonstrated high quality output, which has been confirmed by tests with key customers. The organisation continues to work towards delivering consistent operability.

Borealis is a leading provider of chemical and innovative plastics solutions that create value for society. With sales of EUR 4.7 billion in 2009, customers in over 120 countries, and 5,200 employees worldwide, Borealis is owned 64% by the International Petroleum Investment Company (IPIC) of Abu
Dhabi and 36% by OMV, the leading energy group in the European growth belt.


HDPE imports to Russia in November reduced by 18%

MOSCOW (MRC) -- In November the volume of high-density polyethylene imports to the Russian market expectedly reduced by 18% and moved at 28,7 KT, according to MRC DataScope. In October shutdowns of production in Kazan and Nizhnekamsk for scheduled maintenance resulted in record imports volumes - 35.1 KT.

Only pipe HDPE was imported in the volume of 14 KT. In November, as it was expected, import supplies of high-density polyethylene reduced to 28.7 KT.

Seasonal factor and the growth in pipe HDPE supplies from Kazanorgsintez resulted in serious reduction of pipe material imports up to 8,6 KT. Also the scheduled maintenance of polyethylene production in Shurtansk Mining & Chemical Combine (Uzbekistan) resulted in lowered import volumes.

Export bids at Uzbek exchange were renewed only last week and the resumption of Shurtansk polyethylene supplies to the Russian market are expected only in the second half of December.


Dow to use more ethane to make plastics

(Bloomberg) -- Dow Chemical Co., the world's second- biggest chemical company, plans to use more ethane to make plastics and may form a venture to separate it from natural gas because of low U.S. prices.

Dow plans to increase cracking of ethane by 20 percent to 30 percent at ethylene plants on the U.S. Gulf Coast over the next two to three years, Midland, Michigan-based Dow said in its statement. That will increase Dow's global use of ethane for making ethylene to as much as 65 percent, from about 55 percent, said Rebecca Bentley, a spokeswoman. Costs haven't been determined, she said.

⌠Ethane is an advantaged feedstock in the United States and we anticipate a favorable oil to gas ratio to continue, Raja Zeidan, global business vice president for Dow Hydrocarbons, said in the statement.

Dow, the world's largest producer of ethylene and polyethylene plastics, also said it is reviewing joint-venture options to build a natural-gas liquids fractionator, a plant that separates the components of natural gas, to secure supplies of ethane.