MOSCOW (MRC) -- Roehm intends to begin construction of its 250,000 tonnes per year methyl methacrylate (MMA) plant on the US Gulf Coast, with completion scheduled for 2023, the manufacturer said.
Integrated into the OQ Chemicals manufacturing facility in Bay City, Texas, the plant will be the first to commercialize Roehm's low energy and wastewater LiMA MMA technology on an industrial scale.
Separated from its former parent company Evonik and acquired by private equity firm Advent International in early 2019, Roehm has already hired Wood to provide engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) services for the project.
OQ, formerly Oxea, signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the project firm in February 2021, including agreements to integrate the plant into its existing site and provide raw materials, utilities and services at Roehm's site.
When the market first spoke about the project in question in 2019, sources said the Baytown plant could replace the company's manufacturing facility in Fortier, Louisiana.
Mitsubishi Chemical Corp (MCC) is also considering building an MMA facility from economically viable US ethylene instead of using acetone as a feedstock. Construction of a 350,000 tonnes per year plant in Geismar, Louisiana is under consideration. The final investment decision should be made in mid-2022.
The main sector consuming approximately 75% of MMA is the production of polymethyl methacrylate acrylic plastics (PMMA). Methyl methacrylate is also used to produce methyl methacrylate-butadiene-styrene copolymer (MBS), used as a modifier for polyvinyl chloride (PVC).
According to ICIS-MRC Price Report, global polyvinyl chloride (PVC) prices are no longer putting pressure on the Russian market. During the summer months, an acute shortage is the main factor behind the price rise in Russia. At the same time, the shortage of resin intensified in July due to scheduled shutdowns for maintenance at the two largest plants. An acute shortage led to another wave of price increases, and July PVC prices increased by Rb5,000-47,000/tonne, reaching new record levels.