Petrobras finalizes sale of Nansei Sekiyu for USD165 mln

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Brazil's state-run oil company Petroleo Brasileiro SA has closed the sale of a 100% stake in Nansei Sekiyu to Taiyo Oil Company, according to a securities filing on Thursday, reported Reuters.

Petrobras said Taiyo agreed to pay USD165 million in relation to the transaction. Japan-based Nansei Sekiyu is a refinery in Okinawa with capacity to process 100,000 barrels of oil per day, according to the filing.

As MRC informed before, Petrobras is seeking to sell its 5.8 billion Brazilian real (USD1.4 billion) stake in petrochemical producer Braskem SA. Petrobras hired Brazilian bank Banco Bradesco SA as a financial adviser and has started to pitch the sale to foreign investors.

Petrobras owns a 36% stake in Braskem, Latin America's largest petrochemical producer. The sale would help Petrobras meet its target of selling USD15.1 billion worth of assets in 2015-16, a key part of its plan to cut debt as oil prices plunge to 12-year lows.

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.

Prices of Russian PVC rose for January shipments

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Negotiations over January prices of Russian polyvinyl chloride (PVC) began last week. Producers took a firm stance on price increases, although some companies still managed to maintain December prices, according to ICIS-MRC Price report.

Negotiations over January contract prices of Russian suspension polyvinyl chloride (SPVC) began back last week, but specific deals were registered only this week. After a major price fall in October-December, producers adopted a rigid attitude regarding January, namely, to achieve a price increase of Rb500-1,500/tonne. Most converters were forced to accept the price rise because there was no alternative, but some converters managed to roll over December prices.

High prices in foreign markets, particularly, in Asia, in October-December allowed some Russian producers to increase PVC exports, thus, balancing their inventories at the end of the year. These factors (higher exports and the absence of large stocks) allowed producers to reverse the price trend in the domestic market.

The actual absence of the alternative - competitive imports - also played an important part. Chinese producers were actively increasing prices since late August, which made purchasing of acetylene resin economically unprofitable. Since December, prices of acetylene PVC began to gradually go down for export to Russia, and prices reached USD770/tonne DAP a border of China for January shipments. But even with such a price fall and a major strengthening of the rouble against the dollar, imports of acetylene resin were still not profitable for Russian consumers.

Deals for December shipments of Russian PVC were done in quite a wide range: Rb61,000-64,500/tonne, including VAT and delivery, for K = 64/67. Deals for January shipments were negotiated in the range of Rb62,000-65,000/tonne, including VAT and delivery.

December deals for resin with K = 70 were done in the range of Rb64,000-66,000/tonne, including VAT and delivery; whereas January deals were negotiated in the range of Rb64,500-66,500/tonne, including VAT and delivery.

PP imports into Kazakhstan increased by 11% in January-November 2016

MOSCOW (MRC) - Imports of polypropylene (PP) into Kazakhstan exceeded 21,800 tonnes in first eleven months of this year, up 11% compared to the same period of 2015. At the same time, exports from Kazakhstan decreased over the reported period, according to MRC analysts.

November PP imports into Kazakhstan exceeded 3,000 tonnes against 1,400 tonnes a month earlier, local converters increased their purchases of all PP grades. In general, January - November PP imports in Kazakhstan exceeded 21,800 tonnes against 19,600 tonnes year on year. Kazakh export sales of polypropylene, on the contrary, decreased by 21%.

Structure of PP imports over the reported period was as follows.

Imports of homopolymer PP grew to 12,700 tonnes in the first eleven months of 2016, compared to 9,000 a year earlier. Shipments of propylene copolymers increased by more than half this year, namely, to 9,000 tonnes from 5,500 tonnes over the same period of 2015. Local pipes producers accounted for the main increase in demand for propylene copolymers.

Stronger demand for PP from the local market helped Neftekhim Ltd, the only PP producer in the country, to reduce exports this year. Export volumes were also affected by long time shutdown of PP production, both planned and unplanned. PP exports from the country reached 15,500 tonnes over the stated period, whereas this figure was 19,700 tonnes a year earlier.

Tronox announces global TiO2 price increases

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Tronox Limited has announced on behalf of its subsidiary companies price increases effective January 1, 2017 or as contracts allow for different international markets, said the producer on its site.

Thus, the company will raise prices for all its titanium dioxifde (TiO2) grades of: USD0.07 per pound in North America; EUR150 per metric ton or USD160 per metric ton in US dollar markets in European, Middle Eastern, and African markets; and USD150 per metric ton in Asia Pacific and Latin American markets.

As MRC informed before, another world's major TiO2 producer - Huntsman Corporation - has announced global price increases for all its titanium dioxide pigments, effective January 1, 2017 or as contracts allow, as follows:

- Europe: EUR150 per tonne or USD160 per tonne in dollar-based markets;
- Asia-Pacific, Africa, Latin America and Middle East: USD160 per tonne;
- North America: USD0.07 per pound.

Tronox Limited is a global leader in the mining, production and marketing of inorganic minerals and chemicals. The company operates two vertically integrated businesses: Tronox Titanium Dioxide (TiO2) and Tronox Alkali.

Petrobras sells Guarani stake to Tereos

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Tereos announces the signing of an agreement to purchase the 45.97% stake in Guarani, held by Petrobras, through its subsidiary Petrobras Biocombustivel, for a consideration of USD202 million, said the producer on its site.

Through this transaction Tereos, which already held 54.03% of Guarani’s share capital, will increase its stake to 100%, thus becoming the sole shareholder.

Brazil is the world’s top producer and exporter of sugar, with a market share close to 50% of global exports. This is due to Brazil’s strong competitiveness, the best in the world, which is based on its natural assets, notably its climate and sugarcane technology. Tereos is the 3rd largest sugar producer in Brazil, through its subsidiary Guarani. In a sugar market experiencing constant growth in emerging countries, this position is a key strategic asset for Tereos.

In 2016/17 crop, Guarani transformed close to 20 million tons of sugar cane to produce 1.6 million tons of sugar, over 630 million liters of ethanol and commercialize more than 1 GWh of bio-electricity to the grid.

Guarani has seven sugar and ethanol factories (Andrade, Cruz Alta, Sao Jose, Severinia, Mandu, Tanabi and Vertente) and two refineries (Cruz Alta and Andrade) all situated in the state of Sao Paulo, the best agricultural area in Brazil for sugar cane cultivation. With a strong local presence, Guarani maintains close relationships with more than 1,200 sugar cane growers and producers and valorizes the crops of more than 300,000 hectares of cultivated land. Guarani boasts a fully-mechanized sugar cane planting and harvesting. It is a pioneer in the adoption of new precision agriculture technology.

Following this acquisition, Tereos announces that Guarani will be renamed Tereos Acucar e Energia Brasil.

The closing of this transaction is subject to the approval of the Brazilian competition authorities.

As MRC informed earlier, Petroleo Brasileiro SA said its board approved the sale of two petrochemical companies, Petroquimica Suape and Citepe, to Mexico's Alpek SAB de CV for USD385 million.

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.