MOSCOW (MRC) -- OQ Chemicals (Monheim am Rhein, Germany) says it has been forced to temporarily shut down its manufacturing plant at Bay City, Texas, and declare force majeure “due to severe weather” after the Texas Gulf Coast area was hit by an extreme cold front, reported Chemweek.
The cold weather conditions have affected the area’s terminals, barging, and shipping facilities, as well as OQ’s plant operations, it says. “As a consequence of the plant shutdown, OQ Chemicals provides notice of force majeure and suspension of performance of its supply obligations for oxo alcohols, aldehydes, acids, and esters,” it says.
The company is continuing to monitor the situation and “working diligently to resume production as soon as possible,” says Fred Gaytan, vice president at OQ Chemicals.
The cold weather conditions and high power demand have impacted operations at several oil refineries in Texas, with nearly 2.0 million barrels/day of refining capacity either off-line or in the process of coming down, according to OPIS, an IHS Markit company.
Earlier this week, OQ announced global sales control on all grades of its carboxylic acids and aldehydes due primarily to strong demand and recent short-term raw material disruptions, as well as in preparation for a planned maintenance turnaround at the Bay City plant.
As MRC wrote before, in September 2020, OQ Chemicals entered into an agreement to license its advanced proprietary technology for the production of ethylene and propylene derivatives to Duqm Refinery and Petrochemicals Industries Company (DRPIC) in Oman. DRPIC, a joint venture between Oman Oil Company and Kuwait International Oil Company, is a planned grassroots petrochemical complex at Duqm, Oman. In all, DRPIC awarded twelve license packages to international licensors.
Ethylene and propylene are feedstocks for producing polyethylene (PE) and polypropylene (PP).
According to MRC's ScanPlast report, Russia's estimated PE consumption totalled 2,220,640 tonnes in 2020, up by 2% year on year. Only shipments of low density polyethylene (LDPE) and high density polyethylene (HDPE) increased. At the same time, polypropylene (PP) shipments to the Russian market reached 1 240,000 tonnes in 2020 (calculated using the formula: production, minus exports, plus imports, excluding producers' inventories as of 1 January, 2020).
OQ Chemicals, formerly Oxea, is a global manufacturer of oxo intermediates and oxo derivatives, such as alcohols, polyols, carboxylic acids, specialty esters, and amines. These products are used for the production of high-quality coatings, lubricants, cosmetics and pharmaceutical products, flavours and fragrances, printing inks and plastics. OQ Chemicals is part of OQ, an integrated energy company that delivers sustainability and business excellence. OQ operates in 16 countries and covers the entire value chain from exploration and production to the marketing and distribution of its products.