Perstorp completes TMP expansion in Italy

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Perstorp, the world leader in the production of Trimethylolpropane (TMP), has ramped up the capacity to meet growing demand from the European market, said the company.

TMP is used to enhance the properties of numerous materials. Common applications include the use in saturated polyesters for coil coatings, polyurethanes for coatings and elastomers, acrylic acid esters for radiation curing, esters for synthetic lubricants, and for the surface treatment of pigments.

Filip Tauson, Global VP Polyols at Perstorp, commented: “The capacity expansion is fully in line with Perstorp’s ambition to further strengthen our position in the Polyols market. TMP is a key product in our Polyol portfolio, which is a core business within Perstorp. This product line have been instrumental in the development of Perstorp as an international company and we are happy to expand our position further to be able to serve a strong demand from the market."

The expansion development takes place in Vercelli, Italy. Perstorp’s own TMP production sites are located in China, Sweden, and the United States.

As per MRC, At the beginning of September, Perstorp shut down the phthalic anhydride production facility in the town of Nol (Nol, Sweden) for preventive maintenance. Perstorp shut down its 35 ktpa phthalic anhydride plant in Nola for the entire September due to scheduled maintenance. Repair of phthalic anhydride production is carried out simultaneously with repair of plasticizers production.

Earlier it was reported that Perstorp announced force majeure on 23 March for the supply of plasticizers from the plant in Stenungsund (Stenungsund, Sweden). A source in the company said that on 23 March, a force majeure was announced for the supply of dipropylheptyl phthalate (DPHP) with a capacity of 65 thousand tons per year due to a sudden stop of production at the supplier of raw materials on 19 March.

Perstorp Specialty Chemicals AB is a subsidiary of Perstorp Holding AB. The company was founded in 1881 and is based in Perstop, Sweden. Perstorp Specialty Chemicals AB manufactures chemical products. The company offers base and specialty polyols, formates, organic acids and formaldehyde products.

OMV to start up chemical recycling demo plant at Schwechat refinery in 2023

OMV to start up chemical recycling demo plant at Schwechat refinery in 2023

MOSCOW (MRC) -- OMV, the international, integrated oil, gas and chemicals company headquartered in Vienna, has taken the final investment decision to build a chemical recycling demo plant, based on its proprietary ReOil technology, with operations to start up in early 2023, as per the company's press release.

With this, OMV is taking the next step toward an industrial-scale plant planned for 2026.

The patented chemical recycling technology, developed by OMV, converts plastic waste into synthetic feedstock, under moderate pressure and normal refinery operating temperatures, which is then primarily used to produce again high-quality plastics.

OMV was among the first companies to develop a chemical recycling technology for used plastics more than a decade ago. A ReOil pilot plant has been operating in the Schwechat refinery since 2018, capable of processing 100 kg of used plastics into 100 liters of synthetic feedstock per hour. The pilot plant has been running for a total of 13,000 hours since its commissioning and thus enabled an improvement in the thermal cracking process and supported the further scale up of the ReOil technology.

The current investment covers the construction of a ReOil demo plant with a design capacity of 16,000 t/year at the OMV site in Schwechat, Austria. To finance this project, OMV entered into its first-ever green loan agreement which is in alignment with the green loan principles and based on a green and project-specific external due diligence appraisal, so-called Second Party Opinion, and a project-specific green financing framework.

The demo plant will turn plastic waste that is not fit to be mechanically recycled and would otherwise be sent to waste incineration into a valuable resource. The feedstock will be sourced in Austria, in close cooperation with local waste management companies, and will consist mainly of polyolefins. Examples of such plastic waste include food packaging, plastic cups, lids from takeaway coffee and confectionery packaging. Through the chemical recycling of plastics, OMV obtains a pure raw material which can again be used to produce virgin-quality base chemicals and plastics for all types of applications including packaging for the food industry and medical products, which must meet the highest quality and safety standards.

“The ReOil pilot plant has shown that we are on the right track with our in-house developed technology and with our efforts in this field. We are confident that chemical recycling can complement the available mechanical recycling technologies and that it represents a sustainable and profitable solution. With the decision to build a demo plant, we are now taking the next step toward circular economy and thus toward reducing our CO2 emissions”, said Alfred Stern, CEO and Chairman of the Executive Board of OMV Aktiengesellschaft.

The plant will be fully integrated within the petrochemical site at the Schwechat refinery, enabling OMV to guarantee the best use of resources, maximum efficiency, and the highest industrial safety standards, while creating around 50 new jobs. It represents an important step toward developing ReOil into a commercially viable, industrial-scale chemical recycling technology with a processing capacity of up to 200,000 t/year by 2026.

Like the pilot plant, the ReOil® demo plant will be fully ISCC PLUS certified. ISCC PLUS is a sustainability standard well-recognized by all stakeholders for recycled and bio-based materials, providing traceability along the supply chain and verifying that companies meet environmental and social standards.

Together with Borealis, OMV aims to become a leader in the circular economy of plastics.

As MRC informed earlier, OMV reported utilization of 83% at its European refineries in H1, 2021, down by 3% on the year yet "relatively resilient in light of the COVID-19 impact." It expects the utilization rates at its European refineries to remain at the 2020 level this year. Last year its refineries reported 86% utilization. The company's refineries in Europe ran at 85% utilization in Q2, up from 81% in the year-ago quarter.

We remind that OMV is investing EUR40 million (USD48 million) to expand and modernize a steam cracker and associated units at its refining and petrochemicals complex at Burghausen, Germany. The upgrade will increase the site’s ethylene and propylene production capacity by 50,000 metric tons/year. Following a planned turnaround of the refinery, the revamped cracker and petchem units are expected to start operations in the third quarter of 2022. Initial groundwork is already underway ahead of the upgrade.

Ethylene and propylene are the main feedstocks for the production of polyethylene (PE) and polypropylene (PP), respectively.

According to MRC's ScanPlast report, Russia's estimated PE consumption totalled 2,047,100 tonnes in the first ten months of 2021, up by 17% year on year. Shipments of all grades of ethylene polymers increased. At the same time, PP shipments to the Russian market were 1,226,530 tonnes in January-October 2021, up by 26% year on year. Supply of propylene homopolymers (homopolymer PP) and block-copolymers of propylene (PP block copolymers) increased, whereas supply of injection moulding stat-copolymers of propylene (PP random copolymers) decreased significantly.

OMV produces and markets oil and gas, innovative energy and high-end petrochemical solutions – in a responsible way. With Group sales of EUR 23 bn and a workforce of around 20,000 employees in 2019, OMV Aktiengesellschaft is one of Austria’s largest listed industrial companies.

COVID-19 - News digest as of 21.12.2021

1. Crude oil prices slump as Omicron rapid spread in Europe and the US dims fuel demand outlook

Oil prices slumped on Monday as surging cases of the Omicron coronavirus variant in Europe and the United States stoked investor worries that new restrictions to combat its spread could dent fuel demand, reported Reuters. Brent crude futures fell USD2, or 2.7%, to settle at USD71.52 a barrel, while US West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude futures fell USD2.63, or 3.7%, to settle at USD68.23 a barrel. Brent fell to a session low of USD69.28 per barrel, while WTI sank to USD66.04 per barrel, both their lowest levels since early December. "This is a knee-jerk reaction to the proliferation of the virus and the fear that lockdowns can rapidly spread," said Andrew Lipow of Lipow Oil Associates in Houston.


Hyundai Chemical to start up new HDPE plant by end 2021

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Hyundai Oilbank has announced that the company’s joint venture with Lotte Chemical Petrochemical is set to start up its high density polyethylene (HDPE) plant in Daesan, South Korea by the end of 2021, according to CommoPlast.

Thus, the plant, which will be able to produce 850,000 tons/year of HDPE at its two lines, will be operated by Hyundai Chemical.

The companies' joint petrochemical project in Daesan that costs 2.7 trillion Korean Won (USD2.5 billion) also consists of a cracker with the capacity of 900,000 tons/year of ethylene and a polypropylene (PP) plant with the capacity of 500,000 tons/year.

As MRC reported earlier, Hyundai Chemical started to market cargoes from the new PP plant in Daesan in mid-November, 2021.

According to MRC's ScanPlast report, October estimated HDPE consumption in Russia dropped to 107,120 tonnes from 124,600 tonnes a month earlier. Domestic producers reduced their output due to scheduled turnarounds, whereas exports increased. Overall HDPE shipments to the Russian market totalled 1,166,460 tonnes in the first ten months of 2021, up by 22% year on year. Production increased by 7%, whereas exports fell by 19%.

Hyundai Chemical is a joint venture between South Korea’s Lotte Chemical and Hyundai Oilbank

ProAmpac acquires packaging supplier Prairie State Group

ProAmpac acquires packaging supplier Prairie State Group

MOSCOW (MRC) -- In a deal that expands its position in the food and pet food markets and beefs up its labeling capabilities, flexible packaging supplier ProAmpac has acquired Prairie State Group (PSG), an SQF-certified provider of flexible packaging and labeling services based in Franklin Park, Ill, said Canplastics.

The financial terms of the transaction were not disclosed. PSG produces a range of SQF-certified and environmentally-friendly flexible packaging and label solutions, including wrappers, pouches, compostable film, roll stock, and pressure-sensitive labels.

"PSG brings state-of-the art, vertically integrated manufacturing capabilities and a diverse base of long-tenured customers to ProAmpac,” ProAmpac officials said in a Dec. 20 news release. “With the addition of PSG, ProAmpac extends its reach in the food and pet food markets, expands its pouching capabilities and strengthens its leading market position in sustainable, flexible packaging solutions."

PSG’s founders and management team will remain with the business post-transaction, the news release said. The deal caps a busy year for Cincinnati, Ohio-based ProAmpac. Within the past 10 months, the company has acquired Ireland-based Fispak Ltd. and Irish Flexible Packaging; and Euroflex, Ultimate Packaging, IG Industries, and Brayford Plastics, all of which are based in Europe.

As it was written before, flexible packaging supplier ProAmpac has acquired El Dorado Packaging, a producer of consumer and industrial multi-wall packaging solutions, for an undisclosed amount.

In May 2018, ProAmpac purchased Gateway Packaging Co., a pet food packaging supplier headquartered in White House, Tenn. The terms of the deal have not been disclosed.