Yunlin County government approves extension of 8 operating licenses at Formosa 6th Naphtha Cracking Complex

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Yunlin County government has conditionally approved a one-year extension of 8 operating licenses for using bituminous coal and petroleum coke at the Sixth Naphtha Cracking Complex run by Formosa Plastics Group (FPG) in the Mailiao Township of the southern county, as per Plastemart.

Of the eight operating permits, six were renewed to allow five sets of cogeneration facilities and one petrochemical production line at the No. 3 plant in the complex to burn bituminous coal and another two renewed to permit the use of petroleum coke at the No. 1 plant.

After screening applications filed by the FPG to renew the operating permits based on relevant environmental rules and regulations, the county government approved the renewal on the condition that FPG carry out a seasonal pollution emission reduction project from October to next March and march toward the use of clean or renewable energy according to a top official with the county's Environmental Protection Bureau.

Lin Chang-chao, director of the bureau, said that the county government had asked FPG to gradually reduce the use of bituminous coal at its naphtha cracking plants since 2015, with the reduction amount totaling 2,312,726 metric tons over a period of two years, for a reduction rate of 14.1%.

As MRC informed earlier, in July 2015, Formosa Plastics Corporation, U.S.A. unveiled its plans to build a new, state-of- the-art polypropylene (PP) production line at its Point Comfort, Texas site. This will be the first new PP production to be built in the US in many years. It continues the company’s longstanding commitments to its customers, its employees and the communities in which it operates. No details on the plant’s investment, capacity, technology, construction or anticipated completion/startup was released then.

Formosa Petrochemical is involved primarily in the business of refining crude oil, selling refined petroleum products and producing and selling olefins (including ethylene, propylene, butadiene and BTX) from its naphtha cracking operations. Formosa Petrochemical is also the largest olefins producer in Taiwan and its olefins products are mostly sold to companies within the Formosa Group. Among the company's chemical products are paraxylene (PX), phenyl ethylene, acetone and pure terephthalic acid (PTA). The company's plastic products include acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS) resins, polystyrene (PS), polypropylene (PP) and panlite (PC).

Petronas delays turnaround at HDPE unit in Malaysia

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Petronas Chemical Group (PCG) has postponed maintenance shutdown at its high density polyethylene (HDPE) unit in Kerteh, as per Apic-online.

A Polymerupdate source in Malaysia informed that the company has delayed the outage of its 120,000 mt/year unit until May 2017. As per earlier plans, the plant was supposed to shut on April 16, 2017 for around a week.

Located at Kerteh in Terengganu, Malaysia, the plant has a total production capacity of 240,000 mt/year.

As MRC wrote before, in December 2015, Petronas awarded the Johor port operatorship for its Refinery and Petrochemicals Integrated Development (RAPID) project to Johor Port Bhd (JPB). As the port operator, JPB will manage the operations and logistics functions at the material offloading facility (MOLF) for Petronas’ Refinery and Petrochemicals Integrated Development (RAPID) project in Pengerang.

Petronas plans to build a C6-based metallocene linear LDPE plant and a low density polyethylene (LDPE)/ethylene vinyl acetate (EVA) swing plant at its greenfield integrated refinery and petrochemical complex in southern Johor state by mid-2019. The proposed metallocene LLDPE will have a capacity of 350,000 tpa, while the LDPE/EVA will have a capacity of about 150,000 tpa. The two plants are part of Petronas' planned Refinery and Petrochemical Integrated Development project in Pengerang at Johor. RAPID includes a 300,000 bpd refinery and a petrochemical complex with a 3 million tpa steam cracker, and is expected to come onstream in mid-2019. The petrochemical complex will have the capacity to produce 7.7 million tpa of petrochemical products.

Petronas, short for Petroliam Nasional Berhad, is a Malaysian oil and gas company wholly owned by the Government of Malaysia. The Group is engaged in a wide spectrum of petroleum activities, including upstream exploration and production of oil and gas to downstream oil refining; marketing and distribution of petroleum products; trading; gas processing and liquefaction; gas transmission pipeline network operations; marketing of liquefied natural gas; petrochemical manufacturing and marketing; shipping; automotive engineering; and property investment.

Clariant offers masterbatches that restore recycled PET, PLA for high-value packaging needs

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Clariant, a world leader in specialty chemicals, now offers enhanced formulations of CESA-extend masterbatches that restore important material properties to recycled condensation polymers including PET, PLA, and polycarbonate (PC), as per Plastemart.

This means even high percentages of regrind can be incorporated with virgin resin without significantly reducing physical properties required in food-contact and other high-performance packaging applications.

The latest CESA-extend masterbatches provide a simple, low-cost solution for increasing molecular weight and restoring physical properties, melt strength, and processability that are lost when PET and PLA polymer chains break down during processing and recycling. When added to these recycled materials during processing, CESA-extend masterbatches react with, and re-link, broken polymer chains. Long polymer chains are essential in both PET and PLA extrusion because they give the extruded material the tensile strength essential for good performance when formed into packaging materials.

"CESA-extend masterbatches give processors an affordable, sustainable way to meet growing market demands for higher levels of recycled content in food packaging applications. One of our customers was even able to achieve acceptable results using 100% regrind," says Peter Prusak, Clariant Head of Marketing for North America.

Pelletized CESA-extend masterbatches are available in standard and custom formulations, and can be used to control or enhance a range of material parameters, including melt-flow index (MFI), intrinsic viscosity, hydrolytic stability, mechanical properties and clarity. They can also be custom formulated to provide both linear and branched chain extension.

As MRC informed before, in March 2017, Clariant announced that it had been awarded a contract by Dongguan Grand Resource Science & Technology Co. Ltd. to develop a new propane dehydrogenation unit in cooperation with CB&I. The project includes the license and engineering design of the unit, which is to be built in Dongguan City, Guangdong Province, China. The Dongguan plant will be one of the largest single-train dehydrogenation units in the world. Clariant's technology partner CB&I will base the plant's design on its Catofin® catalytic dehydrogenation technology, which uses Clariant's tailor-made Catofin catalyst and Heat Generating Material (HGM).

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. Clariant India has local masterbatch production activities at Rania, Kalol and Nandesari (Gujarat) and Vashere (Maharashtra) sites in India.

Indorama Ventures in initial talks to acquire stake in Haldia Petrochemicals

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Indorama Ventures Public Co. Ltd, the Bangkok-based chemicals maker controlled by the Lohia family, is in initial talks with The Chatterjee Group (TCG) to buy a stake in Haldia Petrochemicals Ltd (HPL), two people aware of the development said, as per Plastemart.

TCG, promoted by non-resident Indian businessman Purnendu Chatterjee, owns close to 48% in Haldia Petrochemicals. Tata has around 2.3% stake, Indian Oil around 7% and lenders around 6% stake in Haldia Petrochemicals.

A stake sale will require approval from the West Bengal government which owns close to 31% stake in Haldia Petrochemicals, the people said, requesting anonymity. "It is not yet decided whether Indorama will acquire a part of TCG’s 48% stake or also from other shareholders as well, which also includes Tata Group, Indian Oil Corp. and the company’s lenders," said one of the two people cited above.

As MRC reported before, IVL has recently announced that it has entered into a definitive agreement to acquire Glanzstoff Group. Glanzstoff is a major European manufacturer of tire cord fabrics and single-end-cords (SEC) for high performance tire applications.

Indorama Ventures Public Company Limited, listed in Thailand (Bloomberg ticker IVL.TB), is one of the world’s leading petrochemicals producers, with a global manufacturing footprint across Africa, Asia, Europe and North America. The company’s portfolio comprises Necessities and High Value-Added (HVA) categories of Polymers, Fibers, and Packaging, selectively integrated with self-manufactured Ethylene Oxide/Glycols and PTA where economical. IVL products serve major FMCG and Automotive sectors, i.e. Beverages, Hygiene, Personal Care, Tire and Safety segments. IVL has approx. 15,000 employees worldwide and consolidated revenue of USD7.2 billion in 2016.

Haldia Petrochemicals Ltd is a modern naphtha based petrochemical complex at Haldia, West Bengal, India. Haldia has played the role of a catalyst in emergence of more than 500 downstream processing industries in West Bengal with a capacity to process more than 3,50,000 TPA of polymers, among which are polyethylene (PE) and polypropylene (PP).

TPC delays turnaround at LDPE plant

MOSCOW (MRC) -- The Polyolefin Co (Singapore) Pte Ltd (TPC) has postponed shutdown at its low density polyethylene (LDPE) plant, reported Apic-online.

A Polymerupdate source in Singapore informed that the company has delayed the outage of its plant. Further details on the date of shutdown could not be confirmed. As per earlier plans, the plant was suppose to shut on April 17, 2017 for few days owing to an expected feedstock shortage from upstream cracker.

Located on Jurong Island, Singapore, the LDPE plant has a production capacity of 180,000 mt/year.

As MRC informed before, in September 2016, TPC shut its LDPE plant in Ayer Merbau (Jurong Island, Singapore) owing to a short supply of feedstock.

TPC, The Polyolefin Company (Singapore) Pte Ltd is the first major polyolefin manufacturer in Southeast Asia and has been in operations since February 1984. A plant expansion in 1997 and subsequent major modification to increase capacity in 2006 has enabled TPC to become one of the largest and most successful polyolefin producers in the region.