Ongoing VCM issue at Formosa Plastics Point Comfort plant limiting PVC avails for August

MOSCOW (MRC) -- An ongoing vinyl chloride monomer issue at Formosa Plastics' Point Comfort, Texas, plant is impacting downstream polyvinyl chloride production, and limiting availability for August, as per Plastemart.

Multiple sources -- including some with knowledge of business plans -- said this week Formosa Plastics would not be offering spot export PVC for the upcoming month, adding additional tightness to the export market ahead of potential August price increases. Formosa is expected to have domestic resin in August and meet contractual obligations, sources said. A source with knowledge of company operations said repairs to the VCM plant were expected to last about two weeks. Formosa Plastics spokesman declined to comment.

VCM is a key feedstock used in the production of PVC. Formosa has a VCM capacity of 753,000 m tpa at the Point Comfort complex.

SNC-Lavalin awarded FEED conversion to EPC contract by Brahms Oil Refineries

MOSCOW (MRC) — SNC-Lavalin has been awarded a contract by Brahms Oil Refineries Limited to undertake a front-end engineering design (FEED) conversion to EPC contract for a 10,000-bpd crude oil refinery in Kamsar, Guinea, said Hydrocarbonprocessing.

The FEED will provide a budget cost estimate to obtain a final investment decision (FID) for the project in the third quarter of 2017.

SNC-Lavalin's scope for this phase of the work includes project management, coordination and management of the process licensor, management of the geotechnical and topographic survey contractors, preliminary engineering and procurement, as well as estimating services and EPC execution plan for the complete grassroots refinery, including the tank farm and marine works required for import of crude oil by ship. The contract signed to date is for the short form FEED, with a process to agree a phased development of the project ultimately into an EPC project following FID approval.

The plant will be designed to produce diesel, gasoline and jet A fuel to be sold to the local Guinean market.

China June diesel exports rise on year ago

MOSCOW (MRC) — China's exports of diesel rose in June on a year ago as refiners turn to foreign markets to offload their excess product, while liquefied natural gas imports also rose, customs data showed on Sunday, said Reuters.

Diesel exports rose 19% in June to 1.31 MMt, figures from the General Administration of Customs showed. That is up from 1.23 MMt in May but less than the all-time high of 1.91 MMt hit in April.

Gasoline exports of 770,000 t were down 30% from a record 1.1 MMt last June, but were up from 639,799 t in May.

The data came after figures on Monday showed that oil refineries in one of the world's top crude importers ramped up throughput last month to the second highest on record, even as state oil majors prepared to take drastic steps to cut production during the peak summer season.

The high monthly shipments led to big increases in the first half and will reinforce concerns that China, one of the world's top energy markets, is contributing to a fuel overhang as refiners churn out more products like gasoline and diesel than the market can absorb.

For the first six months of 2017, China's diesel exports were up 21% to 7.97 MMt, Sunday's data showed. China became a net exporter of fuel products in late 2016. China's imports of LNG in June were up 38.6% at 3.04 MMt.

Wison Engineering awarded EPFC contract from Formosa Plastics

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Wison Engineering Services Co. Ltd., one of the leading chemical engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) management service providers in China, announced that its non-wholly owned affiliated company, Wison Engineering (China) Limited, has been awarded an engineering, procurement, fabrication and construction (EPFC) contract for one section of Low-Density Polyethylene (LDPE) project in Texas by Formosa Plastics Corporation, said Hydrocarbonprocessing.

This is Wison Engineering's first contract awarded in the American market, representing a new milestone in the implementation of its internationalization strategy. Wison Engineering will be responsible for modularization engineering, fabrication, transportation and on-site installation for the project.

"Adhering to our internationalization strategy, Wison Engineering has been actively seeking overseas business opportunities and established a management system and execution team with the capabilities to cater to the requirements of international business operations, as well as a global procurement and construction resource network,” said Vivian Li, Vice President of Wison Petrochemicals (NA) LLC. “Following the successful business expansion in the Middle East, South America, and CIS markets, this project signifies an important step in the Company's overseas market development, posting great influence on the Company's global market expansion."

As MRC informed earlier, in June 2017, a weekend power outage at Formosa Plastics USA's Point Comfort, Texas, facility lead to unplanned shutdown of multiple units, according to filings with state regulators. Formosa lost electricity to a pair of olefins units, as well as polyethylene, polypropylene and chlor-alkali plants, according to filings with the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality. Power was lost to units just before noon Saturday, with the event running through Sunday night, according to the filings.

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).

Mega-West-Coast refinery on Ratnagiri coast to come onstream

MOSCOW (MRC) -- A special purpose vehicle for the Rs 2 lakh crore Mega-West-Coast refinery on the Ratnagiri coast of Maharashtra is expected to be up and operative by the first week of August, while the land acquisition process has started around the Ratnagiri coast, said D Rajkumar, chairman and managing director of Bharat Petroleum Corporation, as per Plastemart.

The mega refinery and the petrochemical complex will be set up in two phases. Phase-1 will be 40 mtpa plant along with an aromatic complex, naphtha cracker and polymer complex as part of the petrochemical complex. The cost for setting up phase-1 would be somewhere between Rs 1.2-1.5 lakh crore and “will come up between 36 months to 48 months from the date of land acquisition and statutory clearances,” Rajkumar said. The entire refinery will include three crude units of 20 million tonnes each - first of these will be part of phase-1. The second phase will cost Rs 50,000-60,000 crore.

“After signing the joint venture agreement between us (IOC-BPCL-HPCL) we are working on getting the JV, SPV into operation next, and expect by end of July or first week of August the JV company should be up and operative," Rajkumar said on the sidelines of an event in Mumbai. On June 14 the three joint venture partners - IOC, HPCL and BPCL signed the joint venture agreements between them with IOC holding 50%, HPCL 25% and BPCL the remainder 25%.

The joint venture would require around 10,000 acre to 15,000 acre of land for setting up 60 million tonne per annum refinery and a mega petrochemical complex. The refinery would require around 10,000 acre while the petrochemical complex would require 5,000 acre of land. "Our location around Babulwadi has already been finalised and the activities related to land acquisition have started. The land is around 50-100 km from the coast. We will be acquiring the land through Maharashtra Industrial Development Corporation (MIDC) and the government of Maharashtra has been very co-operative," Rajkumar said.

We remind that, as MRC informed before, Reliance Industries Limited (RIL) has delayed the start-up of its new monoethylene glycol (MEG) plant until Q2 2017. As per the earlier plans, the plant was to be started in December 2016. Located at Jamnagar, Gujarat in India, the plant has a production capacity of 750,000 mt/year.