Clariant and Jiangsu Jinneng partner in catalytic off-gas treatment

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Clariant and Jiangsu Jinneng’s collaboration in off-gas treatment is off to a strong start in 2020. Jiangsu Jinneng’s innovative catalytic combustion unit and Clariant’s highly effective EnviCat VOC catalyst have been in successful operation at the phthalic anhydride (PA) plant of Shandong Qilu Plasticizers Co. Ltd. since November 2019, according to Hydrocarbonprocessing.

The partners’ advanced emission control solution is used to purify production off-gas, which contains volatile organic compounds (VOCs) and carbon monoxide (CO). Located in Zibo, Shandong province, the plant already employs another Clariant product, the high-yield OxyMax PA 690 catalyst, to produce 70,000 metric tons of PA annually.

Kevin Chan, Head of Clariant Catalysts China, stated, “We are honored to serve Shandong Qilu Plasticizers with a tailor-made sustainable emission control solution, together with our technology partner, Jiangsu Jinneng. Thanks to the catalyst’s adaptable design, and Clariant’s sophisticated production capabilities, EnviCat VOC could be customized to Shandong Qilu Plasticizers’ precise process requirements to ensure optimum efficiency and performance.”

Clariant’s extensive experience in off-gas treatment catalysts has resulted in the development and widespread use of its high-performance EnviCat VOC. The catalyst is proven to effectively remove both VOCs and CO with an excellent conversion efficiency of up to 99% and beyond. It operates at up to 400 C lower temperatures compared to other off-gas purification methods, such as recuperative thermal oxidation. This greatly reduces fuel consumption and equipment stress, leading to potential significant economic, operational, and safety advantages.

A subsidiary of Chinese Bluesail Chemical Group, Shandong Qilu Plasticizers is the largest producer of industrial plasticizers, and one of the leading manufacturers of PA in China. It has also been one of the first companies in the industry to adopt sustainable catalytic off-gas treatment. Sun Chang Jun, General Manager at Shandong Qilu Plasticizers, expressed his satisfaction with the results, saying, “We are very pleased with Clariant and Jiangsu Jinneng’s solution. After a smooth start-up, the catalysts are performing with excellent efficiency, as promised. As sustainable operation is always our priority, this is an essential and optimal solution for our company. It enables us to successfully meet the latest emission regulations of China’s 13th Five-Year Plan.”

Jiangsu Jinneng Environmental Science and Technology is a certified high-tech enterprise with more than 20 years of experience and over 30 patents in VOC abatement technology. More than 30 Chinese and international chemical plants employ the company’s catalytic off-gas technology and equipment. Chen Min Dong, General Manager at Jiangsu Jinneng, commented on the partnership, “Jiangsu Jinneng and Clariant have collaborated in off-gas treatment in China for over 10 years. We strengthen each other’s advanced technologies to offer each plant operator the ideal solution for their company and the environment.”

As MRC reported earlier, in June 2020, TechnipFMC and Clariant Catalysts entered into a joint development agreement for the demonstration and commercialisation of Clariant’s new state-of-the-art AcryloMax propylene ammoxidation catalyst for the production of acrylonitrile (ACN).

Besides, in May 2020, Clariant’s CATOFIN catalysts was selected by Advanced Global Investment Co. (AGIC), a joint venture between Advanced Petrochemical Company (APC) and SK Group, to build a PDH facility in the Middle East.

Phthalic anhydride is widely used in the production of paints and varnishes and plasticizers for polyvinyl chloride (PVC) products. It is used to a small extent in the production of industrial rubber goods and tires. In addition, it is used in the light, pharmaceutical and electrical industries.

According to MRC's ScanPlast report, Russia's overall PVC production reached 557,000 tonnes in the first seven months of 2020, up by 1% year on year. Only three Russian producers managed to increase their output.

Clariant AG is a Swiss chemical company and a world leader in the production of specialty chemicals for the textile, printing, mining and metallurgical industries. It is engaged in processing crude oil products in pigments, plastics and paints.

Repsol to hold its Spanish refineries run rates at 77% for the full year

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Repsol expects its Spanish refineries to run at a utilization rate of 77% for the full year, reported S&P Global with reference to CEO Josu Jon Imaz' statement July 23.

This would mean a slight increase in the second half to around 78% after reporting rates of 70% in Q2 and 82% in Q1. The conversion rate for the full year is seen at 92%, which would mean a rate of around 93% in the second half after rates of 82% in Q2 and 100% in Q1.

The company previously said it was planning a turnaround at Puertollano before year-end while units at A Coruna and Bilbao are not reported to have returned since being taken offline during the COVID-19 state of alert.

The demand improvement along with emptying inventories mean a current margin level of USD2.80/b should increase toward USD3.80/b soon, Imaz said.

As MRC reported earlier, Repsol's refinery at Puertollano in central Spain will carry out an upgrade of its olefins unit. The modernization will be a part of planned maintenance of the cracker and chemical derivative plants at the end of 2020.

Ethylene and propylene are feedstocks for producing polyethylene (PE) and polypropylene (PP).

According to MRC's DataScope report, PE imports to Russia dropped in January-June 2020 by 7% year on year to 328,000 tonnes. High density polyethylene (HDPE) accounted for the main decrease in imports. At the same time, PP imports into Russia rose in the first six months of 2020 by 21% year on year to 105,300 tonnes. Propylene homopolymer (homopolymer PP) accounted for the main increase in imports.

Repsol S.A is an integrated Spanish oil and gas company with operations in 28 countries. The bulk of its assets are located in Spain.

Rosneft income falls 77%, revenue down 51% in 2Q20

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Russian oil giant Rosneft saw its net income decrease by 77.8% and revenue decline by 51.3% in the second quarter of 2020, from the same quarter of last year, according to its financial results statement released on Friday.

The company's net income attributable to Rosneft shareholders in the April-June period of 2020 came at 43 billion rubles (USD590 million), down from 194 billion rubles (USD2.66 billion) in the same period of 2019.

The firm had a revenue of approximately 1.04 trillion rubles (USD14.22 billion) in the second quarter of this year, which was down from 2.135 trillion rubles (USD29.23 billion) the same quarter of last year.

“The reporting period was characterized by unprecedented macroeconomic conditions including a sharp reduction of prices due to failing demand on the back of COVID-19 pandemic and lower production volumes due to realization of the new OPEC+ agreement," Rosneft Chairman and CEO Igor Sechin said in the statement.

"Crude oil and gas production as well as refining volumes came under severe pressure in 2Q 2020 which led to the deterioration of financial metrics," he added. In the first half of 2020, Rosneft's liquids production amounted to 4.34 million barrels per day -- a 7.3% decrease year-on-year.

The company has a net loss of 113 billion rubles (USD1.55 billion) in the first six month of 2020, while it had a net income of 325 billion rubles (USD4.45 billion) in the same period of 2019. For the January-June period of this year, revenue totaled around 2.8 trillion rubles (USD38.39 billion), which was down 33.4% from 4.2 trillion rubles (USD57.66 billion) from the same period of last year.

As MRC informed earlier, Angarsk Polymer Plant (controlled by Rosneft through OOO Neft-Aktiv) resumed its low density polyethylene (LDPE) production after a scheduled turnaround. The plant"s customers said Angarsk Polymers Plant brought on-stream its LDPE production on 31 July after the scheduled maintenance. The outage started on 22 June and lasted for more than one month. The plant"s annual production capacity is about 75,000 tonnes.

Formosa Plastics USA issues force majeure on PVC supply amid upstream issues

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Formosa Plastics USA, part of Formosa Petrochemical, issued a force majeure on polyvinyl chloride (PVC) supplies from its Texas and Louisiana plants, due to difficulties to produce the product amid upstream steam cracker problems, reported S&P Global with reference to the company's statement in a letter to its customers dated Aug. 14.

"Formosa Plastics Corporation, USA, on behalf of Formosa Plastics Corporation, Texas, and Formosa Plastics Corporation, Louisiana, has experienced unexpected difficulties in its upstream facility at Point Comfort, Texas, impacting the PVC production at both manufacturing sites," the company said in the letter.

Formosa USA and Taiwan officials could not be reached for further comment.

Market sources in Asia said the Asian PVC market would likely remain firm in the near-term as spot supplies would tighten further after Formosa USA's force majeure.

As MRC informed before, in March, 2020, Formosa Plastics was emerging from a turnaround at its 798,000 mt/year PVC plant and upstream 753,000 mt/year vinyl chloride monomer unit at its Point Comfort, Texas, complex.

According to MRC's ScanPlast report, Russia's overall PVC production reached 557,000 tonnes in the first seven months of 2020, up by 1% year on year. Only three Russian producers managed to increase their output.

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).

PTTGC to shut LDPE plant for turnaround in September

MOSCOW (MRC) -- PTT Global Chemical (PTTGC) is in plans to undertake a planned shutdown at its low density polyethylene (LDPE) plant in September, reported S&P Global with reference to a company source.

The plant is expected to remain shut for a turnaround for 24 days.

Located at Map Ta Phut in Thailand, the LDPE plant has a production capacity of 345,000 mt/year.

As MRC wrote before, PTTGC undertook a planned shutdown at its LDPE plant for turnaround on July 7, 2019. The plant remained shut for around 3 weeks.

PTT has a total capacity of 800,000 mt/year of high density polyethylene (HDPE), 345,000 mt/year of LDPE and 800,000 mt/year of LLDPE at the same site.

According to MRC's ScanPlast report, June estimated LDPE consumption in Russia grew to 55,260 tonnes from 45,490 tonnes a month earlier. Kazanorgsintez raised its PE output after a spring shutdown for a scheduled turnaround. Russia's estimated LDPE consumption rose to 291,270 tonnes in January-June 2020, up by 5% year on year. Russian producers raised their production, and LDPE imports also increased.

PTT Global Chemical is a leading player in the petrochemical industry and owns several petrochemical facilities with a combined capacity of 8.45 million tonnes a year.