BASF increases prices for neopentylglycol, trimethylolpropane and 1,6-hexanediol in Europe

MOSCOW (MRC) -- BASF increased June prices of the polyalcohols products as of 1 June, 2017, or as existing contracts permit in Europe, said the producer on its site.

Thus, June prices for the following products rose, as stated below:

- neopentylglycol (NPG) - by EUR200/mt;
- trimethylolpropane (TMP) - by EUR200/mt;
- 1,6-hexanediol (HDO) - by EUR100/mt.

Neopentylglycol (NPG) is a high-quality intermediate used, for example, to produce polyester resins for coatings, unsaturated polyester resins, lubricants and plasticizers.

Trimethylolpropane (TMP) is a high-quality intermediate used primarily for the production of alkyd resins, which are used in paints and coatings. It also serves to produce lubricants.

1,6-Hexanediol (HDO) is used to manufacture industrial coatings including lower volatile organic compound formulations, polyurethanes, adhesives, and cosmetics. HDO also serves as a reactive thinner in the formulation of epoxy systems, which for example are used for the efficient production of rotor blades for modern wind turbines, as well as construction components for automotive lightweight applications.

As MRC informed previously, effective 1 June, or as contracts allow, BASF increased prices for numerous pigments by up to 15% worldwide. The price increase predominantly affects phthalocyanine and inorganic pigments used in the coatings, plastics and printing industries. The price adjustments are necessary due to higher raw materials costs e.g. copper, TiO2 or cobalt, as well as further challenging environmental, health and safety costs.

BASF is the largest diversified chemical company in the world and is headquartered in Ludwigshafen, Germany. BASF produces a wide range of chemicals, for example solvents, amines, resins, glues, electronic-grade chemicals, industrial gases, basic petrochemicals and inorganic chemicals. The most important customers for this segment are the pharmaceutical, construction, textile and automotive industries. BASF generated sales of about EUR58 billion in 2016.

PP imports to Russia down by 5% in Jan-May 2017

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Overall imports of polypropylene (PP) into Russia dropped in the first four months of 2017 by 5% year on year, totalling 61,100 tonnes. At the same time, only imports of homopolymer of propylene (homopolymer PP) decreased, as per MRC's DataScope report.

Russian companies increased PP imports to 15,400 tonnes last month from 10,600 tonnes in April, with homopolymer PP raffia from Central Asia and propylene block copolymer (PP block copolymer) from Europe accounting for the increase in shipments. Overall, 61,100 tonnes of propylene polymers were imported into Russia in January-May 2017, compared to 64,400 tonnes a year earlier. Shipments of homopolymer PP fell by a third, whereas imports of propylene copolymers, on the contrary, increased.

Overall, the structure of PP imports by grades looked the following way over the stated period.

May imports of homopolymer PP exceeded 7,000 tonnes, compared to 3,300 tonnes a month earlier. Local companies raised their shipments of homopolymer PP raffia grade from Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan. Overall imports of this PP grade reached 21,000 tonnes in the first five months of 2017, compared to 31,000 a year earlier.

Last month's imports of PP block copolymers were 3,300 tonnes versus 2,800 tonnes in April. Local companies reduced purchasing of PP block copolymers for non-pressure pipes extrusion. Imports of PP block copolymers into Russia reached 16,800 tonnes in January-May 2017, compared to 12,600 tonnes a year earlier.

May imports of statistical propylene copolymers (PP-random) were slightly over 2,200 tonnes, which was almost equal to the figure a month earlier. Overall imports of this grade of propylene copolymers were 10,900 tonnes in January-May 2017, compared to 10,500 tonnes a year earlier.

Imports of other propylene polymers totalled 12,300 tonnes over the stated period, compared to 10,300 tonnes a year earlier.


Ethylene-polyethylene plant Azerikimya to be closed for overhaul

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Ethylene-polyethylene plant Azerikimya Production Union of Azerbaijan’s state oil company SOCAR will be closed for overhaul in August, said Trend, citing the plant’s Director Ogtay Niftaliyev.

He noted that ground research and the work at the plant as part of modernization of Azerikimya’s enterprises are almost completed.

"In August, production at the plant will be stopped for complete overhaul. In August-September, the first stage of installation of automated control systems should be completed, after which a number of new facilities are planned to be built," said Niftaliyev.

He added that the reconstruction covers a period of three years.

"Its main goal is to increase the efficiency and capacity of ethylene and polyethylene production in order to supply SOCAR Polymer with raw materials in the volume of 150,000 tons of propylene per year. The polyethylene production will be 105,000 tons per year, and this year we are proceeding in line with the production schedule," said the director.

He also expressed confidence that the plan will be implemented.

As MRC informed earlier, SOCAR-Polymer signed an EUR350 mln-agreement on construction of Sumgayit polypropylene (PP) plant at the Azerbaijan-Italy business meeting on 15 April, 2015.

SOCAR Polymer is a subsidiary of the State Oil Company of the Azerbaijan Republic (SOCAR). The entity was formed at the end of 2013 to run investments at the Sumgait Chemical Industrial Park, a production park which intends to become a chemical hub in central Asia.

Emerson and Saudi Aramco sign agreement to collaborate on digital transformation

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Emerson has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with Saudi Aramco during the recently held Saudi-US CEO Forum in Riyadh. The agreement signed by David N. Farr, Emerson’s chairman and chief executive officer and Amin H. Nasser, Saudi Aramco President and CEO, will help bring advanced digitization and automation technologies to one of the leading energy and chemicals companies, reported Hydrocarbonprocessing.

Emerson was one of several companies chosen by Saudi Aramco to promote bilateral trade and investment between Saudi Arabia and the United States and to further cement the strong historic relations between the Kingdom and the US.

"This collaboration will aid in strengthening the digital transformation of Saudi Aramco," said David N. Farr of Emerson. "More doors will be opened for developing talent and training our workforce across the Kingdom."

As part of the agreement, Emerson will continue investing in the Kingdom by training Saudi Aramco engineers and technicians through Emerson’s educational facility and creating more jobs for Saudi locals. Emerson will also provide Saudi Aramco with its Operational Certainty offerings which are designed to increase the reliability of existing facilities and get more value out of existing assets.

Emerson’s continued support for Saudi Aramco is reflected in the development of its own facility in Dhahran Techno Valley that is currently under construction. Emerson is investing USD25 MM in this facility to provide support and services to the oil and gas, mining and other process industries across Saudi Arabia. The Emerson facility will contain offices, training facilities for local talent development, a service and light manufacturing workshop, a technology and collaboration center, as well as laboratories specializing in control systems, flow metering technologies, and research and development. The facility is scheduled for completion in January 2018.

As MRC informed before, in June 2016, Saudi Arabian Oil Co. and Saudi Basic Industries Corp. (Sabic) became one step closer to building their first plant to process crude directly into chemicals, cutting out a link in the production chain from hydrocarbons to the finished products that go into plastics and other consumer goods. The state-owned companies signed an agreement to study such a project to be located in Saudi Arabia. Oil companies normally refine crude into transportation fuels including gasoline and diesel and leave byproducts such as naphtha to be processed separately into chemicals.

Saudi Aramco is an integrated oil and chemicals company, a global leader in hydrocarbon production, refining processes and distribution, as well as one of the largest global oil exporters. It manages proven reserves of crude oil and condensate estimated at 261.1bn barrels, and produces 9.54 million bbl daily. Headquartered in Dhahran, Saudi Arabia, the company employs over 61,000 staff in 77 countries.

Polyone acquires Rutland Holding - maker of customized formulations for consumer applications

MOSCOW (MRC) -- PolyOne Corporation, a premier global provider of specialized polymer materials, services and solutions, has acquired Rutland Holding Co. of Pineville, N.C. Rutland makes "customized formulations for consumer applications", as per Plastemart.

The acquisition will expand PolyOne's specialty color, additives and inks portfolio.

PolyOne will continue to market Rutland's brand names, including Rutland, PRINTOP, QCM and Union Ink, as well as its own Wilflex products.

The acquisition is expected to be immediately accretive to earnings. The purchase price was not included in the release, and a message to the company was not returned as of publication.

As MRC informed before, in January 2015, PolyOne Corporation announced the acquisition of Magenta Master Fibers (Magenta), an innovative developer of specialty solid color concentrates for the global fiber industry.

PolyOne Corporation is a global provider of specialized polymer materials, services, and solutions with operations in specialty polymer formulations, color and additive systems, polymer distribution and specialty vinyl resins.