Venator intends to close its Pori, Finland TiO2 manufacturing facility

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Venator Materials PLC announced the completion of the strategic review of its Pori, Finland TiO2 manufacturing facility, said the company on its website.

As a result of unanticipated cost escalation and extended timeline now understood to be associated with the reconstruction of the Pori, Finland TiO2 facility, Venator will transfer certain technology, and the production of select product grades, to other facilities within its current manufacturing network, which will become more efficient with greater flexibility. The Pori, Finland facility will continue to operate at reduced rates through the transition period, which is expected to last through 2021.

Simon Turner, President and CEO of Venator, commented: "Following an intense review, we have decided to close our Pori, Finland titanium dioxide facility and implement this product transfer and strengthening plan. We expect this plan to provide a better economic return than alternative options while maintaining the quality of Venator's specialty and differentiated business in order to service our valued customers.

"Closing the site is the best decision for the long-term success of our business, as we expect to restore the majority of our specialty and differentiated earnings formerly generated by Pori, using our existing facilities. We also believe doing so will preserve our financial flexibility and improve our ability to deliver free cash flow throughout the cycle.

"We recognize and regret the impact this decision will have on our associates at Pori. We will treat them with fairness and respect consistent with our values and established practices."

Venator is a global manufacturer and marketer of chemical products that comprise a broad range of pigments and additives that bring color and vibrancy to buildings, protect and extend product life, and reduce energy consumption. We market our products globally to a diversified group of industrial customers through two segments: Titanium Dioxide, which consists of our TiO2 business, and Performance Additives, which consists of our functional additives, color pigments, timber treatment and water treatment businesses. We operate 25 facilities, employ approximately 4,500 associates worldwide and sell our products in more than 110 countries.

Evonik listed in the Dow Jones Sustainability Indices Europe and World for the third time in a row

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Specialty chemicals company Evonik Industries AG has been included in the prestigious Dow Jones Sustainability Indices (DJSI) Europe and DJSI World for the third consecutive time, thereby achieving particularly high results for the reporting on environmental and social topics as well as for Customer Relationship Management, as per the company's press release.

Thomas Wessel, the member of Evonik’s Executive Board responsible for sustainability: "We are pleased about this recognition of our work which we see as a confirmation for our commitment to sustainability. Evonik claims to make people’s lives more sustainable, healthier and more comfortable. Building a best-in-class specialty chemicals company, it is important to us that economic success as well as ecological and societal responsibility go hand in hand."

Alongside financial criteria, investors increasingly include ecological and social factors in their investment decisions. They are guided by leading sustainability indices such as the DJSI. Every year, around 2,500 companies worldwide are invited to participate. In each sector, the top 10 percent of the evaluated companies are included in the DJSI World and the top 20 percent in the DJSI Europe. The assessment is performed by the Swiss rating agency RobecoSAM.

Evonik has also positioned itself successfully in other leading sustainability ratings and indices such as, for example, FTSE4Good, ISS-oekom, MSCI World ESG and sustainalytics.

Besides driving forward sustainability within the company, Evonik also participates in international initiatives such as the United Nations Global Compact and Responsible Care®. Moreover, with its innovative products and solutions the specialty chemicals company contributes to achieving the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) set by the United Nations.

As MRC informed earlier, Evonik Industries AG combined its isophorone chemistry and epoxy curing agents business in the new Crosslinkers Business Line effective July 1, 2017. The newly formed Business Line, headed by Min Chong, will be part of the Resource Efficiency Segment.

Evonik, the creative industrial group from Germany, is one of the world leaders in specialty chemicals. Its activities focus on the key megatrends health, nutrition, resource efficiency and globalization. Evonik benefits specifically from its innovative prowess and integrated technology platforms. Evonik is active in over 100 countries around the world.

LDPE units brought on-stream by Sinopec Shanghai

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Sinopec Shanghai Petrochemical has completed turnaround at its Low density polyethylene (LDPE) units, as per Apic-online.

A Polymerupdate source in China informed that the company has resumed operations at the units on September 10, 2018 following a maintenance turnaround. The units were shut for maintenance in May 7, 2018.

Located at Shanghai in China, the company operates two LDPE units with a production capacity of 45,000 mt/year each.

As MRC wrote before, in H2 April, 2018, Sinopec Shanghai Petrochemical conducted a 10-day maintenance at its LDPE unit No. 3 in Shanghai. Located at Shanghai in China, the No.3 LDPE unit has a production capacity of 120,000 mt/year.

China Petroleum & Chemical Corporation, or Sinopec Limited is a Chinese oil and gas company based in Beijing, China. It is listed in Hong Kong and also trades in Shanghai and New York . Sinopec is the worlds fifth biggest company by revenue.

Dow Chemical expands glycol ethers and alkoxylates

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Dow Chemical, part of the merged DowDuPont group, has announced plans to increase capacity for glycol ethers and alkoxylates to meet rising demand, said Chemanager-online.

With regard to glycol ethers, a series of phased incremental investments will eventually double global output of Dow’s select p-series and performance product lines, including Dowanol. Starting in 2018, seven debottlenecking and expansion projects will take place over the next several years, with the first incremental capacity becoming available by the end of 2019. Details on site locations and capacities were not disclosed.

Glycol ethers are used to improve the performance and reduce the health and environmental impacts of end products in various applications. According to Dow, demand for glycol ethers continues to rise as a result of urbanization, a growing middle class, evolving and stricter regulations and increasing sustainability challenges.

The company will also invest in an alkoxylation facility at an undisclosed location on the US Gulf Coast. Start-up is expected by the end of 2021. Dow said the new capacity will support global growth in its core end-markets of infrastructure and home and personal care, along with strengthening market position for brands such as Triton,Tergitol and Ecsorf surfactants and Carbowax Sentry excipients/APIs.

China to build new ethylene complexes in petrochemical wave

MOSCOW (MRC) - China, the world's top chemicals consumer, is building and planning a total of 13 ethylene complexes between now and 2023, in the biggest wave of petrochemical expansions in its history, according to Hydrocarbonprocessing.

China is allowing greater access by global majors and local independents to its massive chemicals market to feed plastics, coatings and adhesives to the fast-growing consumer electronics and automotive sectors, as well as polyesters for clothing.

As MRC reported earlier, in May 2018, China National Offshore Oil Corporation (CNOOC) and Shell Nanhai B.V. (Shell) announced the official start-up of the second ethylene cracker at their Nanhai petrochemicals complex in Huizhou, Guangdong Province, China. Several linked derivative units had also started up and the remaining units will start up progressively over the next few weeks. These new units were constructed by CNOOC and are owned and operated by the existing CNOOC and Shell Petrochemical Company (CSPC) joint venture.

The new ethylene cracker increases ethylene capacity at the complex by around 1.2 million tonnes per year, more than doubling the capacity of the complex, and benefits from a deep integration with adjacent CNOOC refineries. The new facility will also include a styrene monomer and propylene oxide (SMPO) plant, which will be the largest in China when it begins operations.