Evonik announces price increase for hydrogen peroxide and peracetic acid

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Evonik is announcing a price increase of 8% for all grades of Hydrogen Peroxide, marketed under the brands of HYPROX, CLARMARIN, PERSYNT, PERTRONIC, OXTERIL, AOPACK, DUROX and Peracectic Acid, namely PERACLEAN, OXYPURE, VIGOROX and BIOPER, as per the company's press release.

The price increase applies in Europe, Middle East, and Africa as of April 1st, 2021.

Existing contract will be honored.

As MRC informed earlier, in February, 2020, Dow and Evonik entered into an exclusive technology partnership. Together, they plan to bring a unique method for directly synthesizing propylene glycol (PG) from propylene and hydrogen peroxide to market maturity.

Propylene is the main feedstock for the production of polypropylene (PP).

According to MRC's ScanPlast report, PP shipments to the Russian market reached 141,870 tonnes in January 2021 versus 123,520 tonnes a year earlier. Supply of homopolymer PP and PP block copolymers increased.

Evonik is one of the world leaders in specialty chemicals. The focus on more specialty businesses, customer-oriented innovative prowess and a trustful and performance-oriented corporate culture form the heart of Evonik’s corporate strategy. They are the lever for profitable growth and a sustained increase in the value of the company. Evonik benefits specifically from its customer proximity and leading market positions. Evonik is active in over 100 countries around the world with more than 36,000 employees.

EIA forecasts the US will import more petroleum than it exports in 2021 and 2022

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Throughout much of its history, the US has imported more petroleum (which includes crude oil, refined petroleum products, and other liquids) than it has exported. That status changed in 2020, reported Hydrocarbonprocessing.

The US Energy Information Administration’s (EIA) February 2021 Short-term Energy Outlook (STEO) estimates that 2020 marked the first year that the United States exported more petroleum than it imported on an annual basis. However, largely because of declines in domestic crude oil production and corresponding increases in crude oil imports, EIA expects the United States to return to being a net petroleum importer on an annual basis in both 2021 and 2022.

EIA expects that increasing crude oil imports will drive the growth in net petroleum imports in 2021 and 2022 and more than offset changes in refined product net trade. EIA forecasts that net imports of crude oil will increase from its 2020 average of 2.7 million barrels per day (b/d) to 3.7 million b/d in 2021 and 4.4 million b/d in 2022.

Compared with crude oil trade, net exports of refined petroleum products did not change as much during 2020. On an annual average basis, US net petroleum product exports - distillate fuel oil, hydrocarbon gas liquids, and motor gasoline, among others averaged 3.2 million b/d in 2019 and 3.4 million b/d in 2020. EIA forecasts that net petroleum product exports will average 3.5 million b/d in 2021 and 3.9 million b/d in 2022 as global demand for petroleum products continues to increase from its recent low point in the first half of 2020.

EIA expects that the United States will import more crude oil to fill the widening gap between refinery inputs of crude oil and domestic crude oil production in 2021 and 2022. US crude oil production declined by an estimated 0.9 million b/d (8%) to 11.3 million b/d in 2020 because of well curtailment and a drop in drilling activity related to low crude oil prices.

EIA expects the rising price of crude oil, which started in the fourth quarter of 2020, will contribute to more U.S. crude oil production later this year. EIA forecasts monthly domestic crude oil production will reach 11.3 million b/d by the end of 2021 and 11.9 million b/d by the end of 2022. These values are increases from the most recent monthly average of 11.1 million b/d in November 2020 (based on data in EIA’s Petroleum Supply Monthly) but still lower than the previous peak of 12.9 million b/d in November 2019.

As MRC informed earlier, global oil demand is expected to rise by nearly 7% this year, boosted by quicker vaccine distribution and a better economic outlook, according to consultancy Wood Mackenzie's statement. Total liquids demand is expected to average 96.7 million barrels per day (bpd) in 2021, 6.3 million bpd higher than last year when the Covid-19 pandemic caused an unprecedented oil demand shock. Refineries under the threat of closure could repurpose the facilities to produce liquid renewables instead of converting into a terminal, which could help oil companies’ aim of achieving carbon neutrality.

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

According to MRC's ScanPlast report, Russia's estimated PE consumption totalled 241,030 tonnes in January 2021 versus 217,890 tonnes a year earlier. Only shipments of low density polyethylene (LDPE) and high density polyethylene (HDPE) increased. At the same time, PP shipments to the Russian market reached 141,870 tonnes in January 2021 versus 123,520 tonnes a year earlier. Supply of homopolymer PP and PP block copolymers increased.

BP and Sabic to collaborate on circular economy

MOSCOW (MRC) -- BP and SABIC have signed a new agreement to work together to drive circular economy in the petrochemical activities at the Gelsenkirchen (Germany) chemical complex, according to Hydrocarbonprocessing.

Building on a long established relationship between the two companies at the production site, the new collaboration will help to increase production of certified circular products that take used mixed plastics to make feedstock, thereby reducing the amount of fossil resources needed in the petrochemical plants at the site.

Certified circular polymers are part of SABIC’S TRUCIRCLE portfolio and are produced using advanced recycling to convert low quality mixed and used plastic, otherwise destined for incineration or landfill, into pyrolysis oil. The oil, which acts as an alternative feedstock to traditional fossil materials, will be processed at bp’s Gelsenkirchen refining site and then used by SABIC in its Gelsenkirchen polymer plants to produce certified circular products. The final material has identical properties to virgin-based polymers and allows plastics to be recycled over and over again, with no loss of properties or characteristics. After successful trials in December 2020, polymer production using the alternative feedstock started at the site early this year.

“SABIC is committed to helping to create a new circular economy where plastic never becomes waste. Advanced recycling allows us to increase the production of more sustainable materials and use our planet’s resources wisely, whilst reducing the use of conventional approaches such as landfill and combustion. Advanced recycling has a crucial role to play in the current recycling mix as it can capture value from plastic waste streams that have traditionally been ignored or discarded,” said Fahad Al Swailem, Vice President, PE & Sales at SABIC. “We continue to increase our collaborations with upstream suppliers and downstream customers, and this new initiative with our long-term partner bp takes us one step further to achieving our vision.”

bp and SABIC have a collaboration going back decades in petrochemicals at the Gelsenkirchen site, which is the starting point for the value chain of the chemical industry’s network in the northern Ruhr Area. The refining and petrochemicals site in Gelsenkirchen plays an important role within the chemical industry in North Rhine-Westphalia, Germany’s most populous state. bp operates one of the largest olefin plants in Germany, with a production capacity of around two million tonnes.

“This is an important milestone in our vision of achieving up to 30 percent of our ethylene and propylene production from sustainable, recyclable raw materials by 2030,” says Wolfgang Stuckle, Vice President Refining and Specialities Solutions Europe & Africa at bp. “It is a fantastic achievement on the part of the Gelsenkirchen team, after more than a year’s preparation, to set up the new initiative with our partners at SABIC. At the same time, it is what bp’s recently announced Net Zero strategy is all about.”

The certified base chemicals from bp and the certified circular polymers from SABIC are recognised through the International Sustainability and Carbon Certification plus (ISCC+) scheme that certifies content and standards across the value chain from source to end product. The ISCC+ certification works on what is known as a ‘mass balance system’, meaning that for each tonne of circular feedstock fed into the cracker and substituting fossil-based feedstock, a tonne of the output can be classified as circular.

The circular polymers form part of SABIC’s TRUCIRCLE portfolio and services for circular innovations. The TRUCIRCLE portfolio spans design for recyclability, mechanically recycled products, certified circular products from feedstock recycling of used plastic, certified renewable products from bio-based feedstock and closed loop initiatives to recycle plastic back into high quality applications.

As MRC reported previously, in early February, 2021, Rosneft Oil Company and BP signed a Strategic Collaboration Agreement focused on supporting carbon management and sustainability activities of both companies. The agreement builds on years of partnership between the two companies and formalises key elements of their collaboration on sustainability and work to identify carbon reduction activities and low carbon opportunities.

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

According to MRC's ScanPlast report, Russia's estimated PE consumption totalled 241,030 tonnes in January 2021 versus 217,890 tonnes a year earlier. Only shipments of low density polyethylene (LDPE) and high density polyethylene (HDPE) increased. At the same time, PP shipments to the Russian market reached 141,870 tonnes in January 2021 versus 123,520 tonnes a year earlier. Supply of homopolymer PP and PP block copolymers increased.

Saudi Basic Industries Corporation (Sabic) ranks among the world's top petrochemical companies. The company is among the world's market leaders in the production of polyethylene, polypropylene and other advanced thermoplastics, glycols, methanol and fertilizers.

BP is one of the world's largest oil and gas companies, serving millions of customers every day in around 80 countries, and employing around 85,000 people. BP’s business segments are Upstream (oil and gas exploration & production), and Downstream (refining & marketing). Through these activities, BP provides fuel for transportation; energy for heat and light; services for motorists; and petrochemicals products for plastics, textiles and food packaging. It has strong positions in many of the world's hydrocarbon basins and strong market positions in key economies.

Ports of Antwerp, Zeebrugge to merge

MOSCOW (MRC) -- The ports of Antwerp and Zeebrugge in Belgium have agreed to merge, in a move aimed at strengthening their combined position within the global supply chain, reported Chemweek.

The unification process is expected to be finalized before the end of 2021, subject to regulatory and competition approvals, they say. Talks on the merger have been underway since 2018.

The ports will operate under the name Port of Antwerp-Bruges, and say their combination will enable them to be more resilient to future challenges and “take a lead in the transition towards a low-carbon economy.” The combined ports will have a total maritime freight throughput of 278 million metric tons/year, account for the transit of more than 15% of Europe’s liquid natural gas (LNG), and remain “Europe’s most important chemical hub,” they say.

Port of Antwerp-Bruges would have a combined liquid bulk freight total of 81.6 million metric tons, consisting mostly of oil, gas, and chemicals, with Port of Antwerp making up 69 million metric tons of the total. Container volumes at Port of Antwerp, Europe’s largest integrated chemical cluster, rose 6.8% in 2019 to just under 11.9 million twenty-foot equivalent units (TEUs), while Zeebrugge handled 1.8 million TEUs. Rotterdam in the Netherlands, Europe’s largest container port, handled 14.8 million TEU in 2019.

Each port is owned by their respective city municipal authorities. The combined venture would see City of Antwerp own 80.2%, with City of Bruges holding 19.8%.

The larger Port of Antwerp has to date specialized mainly in the handling and storage of containers, break bulk, and chemical products, while Zeebrugge is a major port for container handling, automotive, and LNG shipments. “Working more closely together will make it possible to consolidate sustainable growth, not only of each port’s individual market share, but also of the joint market share of both ports together,” they say.

The combined ports, located around 100km from each other, aim to maximize opportunities to develop and optimize interconnectivity between their sites. Transportation of goods by rail between them will be bundled, estuary traffic by inland North Sea vessels will be optimized, and pipeline connections will also be on their initial list of priorities, they say.

Port of Antwerp-Bruges aims to position itself as an import hub for green hydrogen “and will play an active and pioneering role in the hydrogen economy,” they state. It will also continue ongoing efforts to reduce their carbon footprints, and examine methods of applying carbon capture, utilization, and storage (CCUS) to contribute to their transition towards becoming a low-carbon port, they add.

As MRC informed earlier, demand and supply growth for naphtha in European markets is likely to be moderate until at least the second quarter of 2021 as inventories are run down and deployment of a COVID-19 vaccine starts to make some headway in reviving oil products demand, according to IHS Markit analysts. Refinery margins in Europe are forecast to remain under pressure from stocks that have built up during the pandemic amid volumes flowing into the region from abroad. Despite low refinery run rates, European naphtha supplies will not be tight because of the imbalance in different refinery yields, says IHS Markit principal analyst Eleanor Budds.

We remind that PKN Orlen (Plock, Poland), the country’s largest petrochemicals producer, says higher margins and sales volumes boosted fourth-quarter EBITDA in its petchems business to 508 million zloty (USD137 million), up 187% year on year (YOY). Improved petchem margins compared to the prior-year period were enhanced by sales volumes in the quarter that rose 17% YOY to 1.4 million metric tons, according to the refining and energy group. Sales volumes for polyolefins rose 47% YOY, polyvinyl chloride (PVC) volumes soared by 115%, purified terephthalic acid (PTA) rose 15%, and fertilizers increased 12%, while olefins sales were broadly flat, it says.

We also remind that the only Czech refinery and major petrochemical producer Unipetrol was renamed Orlen Unipetrol from 1 January, 2021. Unipetrol is 100% owned by the Orlen Group.

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

According to MRC's ScanPlast report, Russia's estimated PE consumption totalled 241,030 tonnes in January 2021 versus 217,890 tonnes a year earlier. Only shipments of low density polyethylene (LDPE) and high density polyethylene (HDPE) increased. At the same time, PP shipments to the Russian market reached 141,870 tonnes in January 2021 versus 123,520 tonnes a year earlier. Supply of homopolymer PP and PP block copolymers increased.

Ukrainian PVC imports down by 43% in January-February, exports down by 2%

MOSCOW (MRC) - Imports of suspension polyvinyl chloride (SPVC) into Ukraine decreased by 43% in the first two months of this year, compared to the same period in 2020 and reached about 4,700 tonnes. Sales of Ukrainian PVC to foreign markets dropped by 2% year on year, according to a MRC's DataScope report.

Last month's SPVC imports into the Ukrainian market decreased to 2,100 tonnes from 2,600 tonnes in January, as European producers decreased their exports. Overall SPVC imports reached 4,700 tonnes in January-February 2021, compared to 8,300 tonnes a year earlier.
The orientation to domestic PVC and limited export quotas from European producers were the main reason for such a serious drop in imports.
European producers with the share of about 96% of the total imports over the stated period were the key suppliers of PVC to the Ukrainian market.

Last month, Karpatneftekhim increased sales in the foreign markets significantly on the back of record high global prices, export sales of Ukrainian PVC were 22,000 tonnes versus 19,700 tonnes in January. Overall, about 41,700 tonnes were shipped for export in the first two months of 2020, compared to 42,300 tonnes a year earlier.