IVL to buy Nigerian packaging business

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Indorama Ventures (IVL), through its indirect subsidiary, Indorama Netherlands, has signed a definitive share purchase agreement with Church Street Trustees as trustees of the SI Trust, BTI Overseas Ltd. and Capital Alliance Private Equity II to acquire Bevpak (Nigeria) Ltd, as per Apic-online.

Bevpak, located in Ibadan, Nigeria, is "one of the largest" manufacturers of polyethylene terephthalate preforms in West Africa, IVL noted. It has a production capacity of 18,000 t/y.

The transaction, for which a value was not given, is expected to be completed within the first quarter of 2019, subject to regulatory approvals.

As MRC informed before, Indorama Ventures (IVL) has commenced production of purified terephthalic acid (PTA) and polyethylene terephthalate (PET) at plants it acquired from Artlant PTA in Portugal and EIPET in Egypt, respectively.

Indorama Ventures Public Company Limited, listed in Thailand, is one of the world's leading petrochemicals producers, a global manufacturing footprint with 59 sites in 20 countries across Africa, Asia, Europe and North America. The company's portfolio is comprises necessities and high value-added (HVA) categories of polymers, fibers, and packaging. Indorama Ventures has approx. 15,000 employees worldwide and consolidated revenue of USD 8.4 billion in 2017. The company is listed in the Dow Jones Sustainability Index (DJSI).

Venezuelan sanctions unlikely to have a significant impact on U.S. refiners

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Venezuelan sanctions unlikely to have a significant impact on U.S. refiners, said Hydrocarbonprocessing.

U.S. imports of Venezuelan crude oil have decreased in recent years as production in Venezuela declined. Recently announced U.S. sanctions directed at Venezuela’s energy sector and state oil company, Petroleos de Venezuela, S.A. (PDVSA), will essentially eliminate U.S. imports of Venezuelan crude oil as the full effects of the sanctions emerge. However, the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) does not anticipate any significant decrease in U.S. refinery runs as a result of these sanctions.

U.S. imports of Venezuelan crude oil have been falling for several years and refineries have been replacing Venezuelan crude oil with other heavy crude oils.

Moving forward, refineries may also choose to run lighter crude oils because transportation constraints may limit the availability of heavy crude oils. Refiners with significant asphalt and road oils processing unit capacity, for which Venezuelan crude oil is well suited, may have a harder time finding adequate replacements; however, these refineries have also limited imports from Venezuela recently.

On January 23, 2019, the United States officially recognized the President of the Venezuelan National Assembly, Juan Guaido, as the Interim President of Venezuela. On January 25, 2019, the White house issued Executive Order 13857, Taking Additional Steps to Address the National Emergency with Respect to Venezuela, which expanded U.S. sanctions by including PDVSA in sanctions against the Maduro regime. Although there is a wind-down period for purchasing petroleum and petroleum products, payments must be placed into an escrow account that is not accessible by PDVSA. EIA expects this action to have an immediate impact, essentially eliminating U.S. imports from Venezuela as the full effects of the sanctions are felt. The sanctions apply not only to U.S. persons, but also to any transaction involving the U.S. financial system. The Office of Foreign Assets Control at the U.S. Treasury Department indicates that sanctions may be lifted after control of PDVSA is transferred to Interim President Juan Guaido or a subsequent democratically elected government.

The sanctions also prohibit the United States from exporting petroleum products to Venezuela. This prohibition includes diluent, which PDVSA uses to mix with its much heavier crude oils. If PDVSA cannot find another source for diluent in a relatively short period of time, Venezuela’s crude oil production is likely to decline.

In the first 11 months of 2018, U.S. Gulf Coast refineries ran crude oil with an average sulfur content of 1.4% and an average API gravity of 32.6 degrees. The average API gravity was 30.0 degrees in 2013 and this change reflects the trend of Gulf Coast refineries running lighter crude oil slates. The lightening of the crude slate is likely the result of increased refinery capacity and availability of lighter crude oils and is not indicative of a decrease in demand for heavy crude oil, which Gulf Coast refineries are generally optimized to run.

AVEVA industry-leading portfolio enables edge-to-enterprise visualisation using hybrid cloud

MOSCOW (MRC) -- 23rd Annual ARC Industry Forum, Florida: AVEVA announced a major update to its Monitoring, Control and Information Management portfolio, delivering edge-to-cloud integration and advanced visualization tools, along with seamless access to advanced applications and powerful analytics, as per Hydrocarbonprocessing.

These advanced capabilities are delivered in AVEVA’s market-leading portfolio including InTouch HMI, InTouch Edge HMI, System Platform, Historian and AVEVA Insight products, providing unmatched enterprise-wide visualization and insight into operations and a high degree of commercial flexibility with a subscription, a foundational element of digital transformation.

With these capabilities available in a hybrid cloud model, customers can quickly bridge OT and IT requirements, create reusable industrial applications with rapid time to value, and drive operational efficiency with increased visibility across multiple levels of an organization, in the discrete, process, hybrid and infrastructure industries.

This enhanced cloud offering provides a seamless, integrated experience that enables customers to access information and functionality from across AVEVA’s broad range of proven value chain applications: from engineering design data, to manufacturing execution management, to predictive maintenance, and much more. Companies can benefit from unparalleled insights and work process digitalization, for example using real-time and historical data with machine learning capabilities to predict possible faults or failures and take pre-emptive action through automated workflows supported by augmented reality tools.

AVEVA CEO Craig Hayman said, "AVEVA is committed to partnering with our customers to achieve maximum value from industrial digital transformation. We enable smarter decisions by creating innovative technology. The latest enhancements in our Monitoring, Control and Information Management portfolio, exemplified by the benefits delivered through the ADNOC Panorama initiative, perfectly illustrate how we are empowering our customers with edge-to-enterprise visibility."

A leading example of where AVEVA’s enterprise visualisation and integration solutions have been deployed, and are a key enabler to wholescale digital transformation, is the diverse and complex operations of the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC). The Panorama Digital Command Centre enables ADNOC to monitor and optimise the performance of its assets and operations across 16 operating companies (OPCOs) from their Abu Dhabi headquarters. This includes oil and gas development and production, through to processing, petroleum and chemical products to transportation and distribution.

Valero seeks to maintain lawsuit against PG&E over refinery outage

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Refiner Valero Energy Corp is asking a bankruptcy court to allow its lawsuit against PG&E Corp over an emergency shutdown to move forward, arguing the USD75 million case will not interfere with the power producer’s Chapter 11 proceeding, according to Hydrocarbonprocessing.

In a filing, Valero urged US Bankruptcy Court Judge Dennis Montali in San Francisco to lift the litigation stay on the grounds that the dispute will be more efficiently resolved outside of bankruptcy.

As MRC wrote earlier, in late February 2018, CB&I announced that its CDAlky technology had been selected by Valero Refining - New Orleans LLC for its St. Charles Alkylation Project located in Norco, Louisiana. CB&I's overall scope of supply on the project includes CDAlky technology license, basic engineering and proprietary equipment. When it becomes operational in 2020, the new CDAlky unit will produce 25,000 BPD alkylate from FCC-derived olefin feedstocks.

Axens continues its development and takes on a new identity

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Following the acquisition of Heurtey Petrochem and Prosernat, Axens expands its portfolio of solutions and introduces its new brand architecture, identity and logo, said Hydrocarbonprocessing.

Axens, a subsidiary of the IFP group, is now capable of supplying its customers with an integrated offer including a comprehensive range of solutions for the conversion of oil and biomass into clean fuels, the production and purification of the major petrochemical intermediates, along with the treatment and conversion of natural gas.

Prosernat’s input reinforces Axens natural gas treatment technologies and enables synergies between catalysts, technologies and proprietary equipment, notably for the modularization of Axens technologies.

Heurtey Petrochem’s industrial legacy expands Axens offer in the field of process furnaces, which will be developed through synergies with its own technologies, combining them with its energy efficiency and digitalization services.

This acquisition has led Axens to design and roll-out a new identity and brand architecture:

Axens becomes the global brand for all its activities represented by the following commercial brand names:

- Axens Solutions for activities currently performed by the Global Business Units Catalysts & adsorbents and Process Licensing, including the modular units business formerly offered by Prosernat,

- Heurtey Petrochem Solutions for the furnace business and Axens Horizon for the auditing, consulting and digital applications activities, promoted by the Performance Programs Business Line, both within the Global Business Unit Engineering & Solutions.

This new identity reflects the scope of Axens’ integrated offer, which now includes a wide range of technologies, proprietary equipment, furnaces, modular units, catalysts, adsorbents and related services.

Through its 50% stake in the capital of Eurecat, Axens expands its offer to all services dealing with the catalysts management, including catalyst conditioning and regeneration along with reactor loading and unloading operations. Axens is thus ideally positioned with its customers to cover the entire value chain from feasibility studies to the start-up and follow-up throughout the entire unit cycle life.