Enterprise, Enbridge to jointly build VLCC crude export terminal off Houston

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Enterprise Products Partners and Enbridge have agreed to jointly develop a deepwater crude oil export terminal offshore Houston, the latest sign of consolidation in the crowded field of US Gulf Coast export projects, reported S&P Global.

Enbridge plans to buy interest in Enterprise's already proposed Sea Port Oil Terminal, subject to the project receiving a federal deepwater port license. Both companies would focus on fully subscribing the SPOT export capacity before Enbridge possibly pursues its own Texas COLT project later, Enbridge said in a statement.

Enbridge and Enterprise are 50/50 partners in the 850,000 b/d Seaway Pipeline system that moves US and Canadian crude to the Gulf Coast.

"It makes a lot of sense to leverage this strong business relationship in moving forward with an offshore deepwater export facility," Enbridge spokesman Michael Barnes said Monday. "We can help each other. More importantly, this agreement combines the talents and expertise of both companies in order to help customers in the US Gulf Coast."

Seaway last month announced an open season to gauge interest in expanding capacity by 200,000 b/d.

Separately Monday, Enbridge announced plans to build a new 15 million-barrel storage terminal at Jones Creek, where Seaway ends. Barnes said it would provide access to Houston-area refineries and existing and future export facilities.

"These two significant steps will benefit customers in the US Gulf Coast region, giving them more options to get their product to market," Barnes said.

The SPOT single-point mooring buoy system off Brazoria County would be able to fully load two VLCCs at a time at an overall rate of 2 million b/d, according to Enterprise's application to the US Department of Transportation's Maritime Administration. Enterprise made a final investment decision on the project in July after securing long-term agreements with Chevron, including unspecified transport and storage at Enterprise's 8.3 million-barrel ECHO terminal in Houston.

Enterprise has said the port will have access to over 6 million b/d of crude supply and more than 300 million barrels of storage, of which nearly 50 million is owned by Enterprise.

If additional US crude export demand exists, Enbridge would then pursue its Texas COLT project offshore Freeport.

Only one Gulf of Mexico port, the Louisiana Offshore Oil Port, can currently fully load VLCCs without lightering from smaller vessels. Eight VLCC-capable projects are competing to move the next wave of US crude exports with deepwater ports off Houston, Corpus Christi and southeast Louisiana, although not all of the proposed capacity will be needed.

Enterprise has said it expects to receive a federal permit for SPOT in the second quarter of 2020. Construction will take up to two years, with some work getting starting before the final approval, executives said.

As MRC wrote before, Enterprise Products Partners' Mont Belvieu propane dehydrogenation unit in Texas restarted from planned maintenance in the first week of December. The PDH unit went offline for maintenance on November 13. That day, the company said in a filing with the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality that the RAC "B" turbine shut down, which resulted in flaring. The flaring was estimated to last 72 hours. The unit has a capacity of 750,000 mt/year, according to Platts data.

Propylene is the main feedstock for producing polypropylene (PP).

According to MRC's ScanPlast report, the estimated PP consumption in the Russian market in January-October 2019 totalled 1,066,520 tonnes, up by 7% year on year. Supply of block copolymers of propylene (PP block copolymer) and homopolymer of propylene (homopolymer PP) increased, demand for statistical copolymers (PP random copolymer) decreased.

Enterprise Products Partners L.P. is an American midstream natural gas and crude oil pipeline company with headquarters in Houston, Texas. It acquired GulfTerra in September 2004. The company ranked No. 105 in the 2018 Fortune 500 list of the largest United States corporations by total revenue

Imports of Ineos Styrolution GPPS to Russia rises by 64% in Jan-Nov 2019

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Ineos Styrolution's general purpose polystyrene (GPPS) imports into Russia increased in the first eleven months of 2019 by 64% year on year to 12,000 tonnes, according to MRC's DataScope report.

This figure was 7,300 tonnes in January-November 2018.

Ineos Styrolution is the largest GPPS supplier to Russia.

European material accounted for 47% of the total GPPS shipments over the stated period versus 36% in the first eleven months of 2018.

At the same time, November Styrolution's GPPS shipments to the Russian market grew by more than 2 times to this year's maximum of 1,500 tonnes from 700 tonnes a month earlier, the company's imports into the country were 2,400 tonnes in November 2018.

HIPS and GPPS imports to Kazakhstan fall by 11% in Jan-Oct 2019

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Overall imports of general purpose polystyrene (GPPS) and high impact polystyrene (HIPS) to Kazakhstan dropped in the first ten months of 2019 by 11% year on year, totalling 7,600 tonnes, according to MRC's DataScope report.

However, October imports of material into the country grew by 6% year on year and reached the highest level this year - 1,200 tonnes, compared to 1,100 tonnes in September 2019, whereas HIPS and GPPS imports to Kazakhstan were 1,100 tonnes in October 2018.

HIPS and GPPS are shipped to Kazakhstan mainly from Russia.

The share of the Russian Federation decreased by 14% of the total imports in the first ten months of 2019 to 73% (5,500 tonnes).

October imports of Russian material into the country decreased by 9% from September to 1,000 tonnes versus 1,100 tonnes. HIPS and GPPS imports to Kazakhstan also were 1,000 tonnes in October 2018.


Stavrolen resumes PE and PP production

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Stavrolen, Russia's major polyolefins producer, has resumed its high density polyethylene (HDPE) and polypropylene (PP) production capacities after an unscheduled turnaround, according to ICIS-MRC Price report.

The plant's representative said Stavrolen resumed its HDPE and PP production on 18 December after a forced unplanned outage. The unscheduled shutdown began on 11 December and was caused by the necessity to conduct technical works at the ethylene unit.

Stavrolen's (part of Lukoil) annual capacity of PP and HDPE production is 120,000 and 300,000 tonnes, respectively. The plant's output of propylene polymers and HDPE exceeded 86,700 tonnes and 221,300 tonnes, respectively, in the first ten months of 2019.

PP imports to Russia down by 4% in Jan-Nov 2019

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Polypropylene (PP) imports into Russia dropped in the first eleven months of 2019 by 4% year on year to 167,400 tonnes. Propylene homopolymer (homopolymer PP) accounted for the greatest decrease in imports, according to MRC's DataScope report.

Russian companies raised their PP imports in Novmeber to 15,300 tonnes from 14,900 tonnes a month earlier, with homopolymer PP accounting for a slight increase in shipments. Thus, overall PP imports to Russia totalled 167,400 tonnes of propylene polymers in January-November 2019, compared to 173,800 tonnes a year earlier. Purchases of all grades of propylene polymers fell in foreign markets, with block-copolymers of propylene (PP block copolymers) being the exception and with homopolymer PP accounting for a noticeable decrease.

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

November imports of homopolymer PP were about 6,000 tonnes versus 5,000 tonnes a month earlier, PP shipments from Turkmenistan increased. Thus, overall imports of homopolymer PP totalled 51,200 tonnes in the first eleven months of 2019, compared to 61,300 tonnes a year earlier.

Last month's imports of PP block copolymers were 3,700 tonnes, which virtually corresponds to the figure of October. Imports of PP block copolymers into Russia reached 50,600 tonnes in January-November 2019, compared to 43,300 tonnes a year earlier.

November imports of stat-copolymers of propylene (PP random copolymers) remained at the last month's level - 3,200 tonnes. Overall imports of this grade of propylene copolymers totalled 30,100 tonnes in January-November 2019 versus 32,400 tonnes a year earlier, with film grade PP accounting for the main reduction in shipments.

Imports of other propylene polymers totalled 32,500 tonnes over the stated period versus 36,800 tonnes a year earlier.