India refiner Nayara to find funding harder due to Rosneft link

India refiner Nayara to find funding harder due to Rosneft link

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Indian refiner Nayara Energy, part-owned by Russian oil giant Rosneft, could find it harder to raise funds for expansion as a result of Western sanctions in response to Russia's invasion of Ukraine, sources with direct knowledge of the matter said, said Hydrocarbonprocessing.

"We are cautious even if there is limited exposure and in this case they have a majority Russian exposure via Rosneft and a Cyprus based fund, so it makes sense to put these loan disbursals on hold and to play safe," one banking source said. Nayara said in response to questions about its funding plans that it did not have any direct dependence on banks for the expansion of its retail network as the majority of its outlets are owned and operated by dealers.

"Some banks do provide working capital financing facilities to some of our dealers, which is governed by the bi-lateral agreement between the bank and the franchisee, without any recourse to Nayara," it said in a statement on Thursday. Nayara is in the process of rebranding its fleet of more than 6,000 retail fuel stations in its own name from Essar Oil as it was formerly known, and plans another 3,000 outlets.

Dealers who want to set up Nayara's fuel stations and those rebranding their facilities, are facing difficulty in getting funds from banks, the sources said. Rosneft owns a 49.13% stake in Nayara, which was formerly known as Essar Oil, while a similar-sized holding is split between global commodities trading house Trafigura and Cyprus-based Russian investment group United Capital Partners.

Indian banks are awaiting clarity from Prime Minister Narendra Modi's government and the central bank on assets and payment settlements relating to Russia, which has meant putting loans to businesses related to Nayara on hold, the sources said. Nayara operates the 400,000 bpd Vadinar refinery in India's western Gujarat state and has plans to raise its petrochemical capacity in phases.

Last year, Nayara raised 40 B rupees (USD528 MM) for its planned USD850 MM polypropylene plant, which is to be funded through a mix of debt and equity. The sources, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said it could be difficulty for Nayara to raise funds in the next round for expansion if sanctions against Russia continue.

We remind, in December 2021, Rosneft backed Nayara Energy, earlier known as Essar Oil, has chalked out massive expansion plans for India which include setting up of a greenfield petrochemical complex and ramping up its existing refining capacity from 20 million tonnes per annum (mtpa) to 46 mtpa at Vadinar near Jamnagar in Gujarat. The total envisaged investment for expansion, of which a major part is towards building a new petrochemical complex, is about Rs.1.5 lakh crore, they said. The expansion plans also include increasing its retail presence and additional investment at the captive port of Vadinar.

As per MRC, Nayara Energy hopes to operate its 400,000 barrels per day (bpd) refinery in western India at close to 100% capacity in 2021 as fuel demand is picking up, according to Hydrocarbonprocessing with reference to Chief Executive Alois Virag's statement at APPEC 2021 conference. Nayara, part owned by Russian oil major Rosneft, cut rates at its Vadinar refinery in Gujarat state last year.

Yangzhou Huitong Biological New Material to install Sulzer PLA technology

Yangzhou Huitong Biological New Material to install Sulzer PLA technology

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Sulzer has been awarded by Yangzhou Huitong Biological New Material to supply technology and key equipment for its polylactic acid (PLA) production facility in Jiangsu Province, China, said Hydrocarbonprocessing.

The facility will have a production capacity of 30,000 tpy. The plant will be able to produce a large portfolio of PLA grades serving a broad range of end-use applications from food packaging to kitchen utensils or toys. Replacing traditional plastics with non-fossil based plastics directly contributes to an improved carbon footprint.

The versatility of Sulzer’s PLA technology allows the production of a large range of molecular weights and stereoisomer ratios, while meeting product high-quality standards. To meet Yangzhou Huitong Biological New Material’s requirements, Sulzer Chemtech will design and provide its lactide purification, polymerization, devolatilization and post-reaction proprietary technologies. The licensing agreement framework also includes extensive service support from engineering to technical assistance and field services.

"This new facility will allow us to enter the fast-growing bioplastic market," said Zhang JianGang, President of Yangzhou Huitong Biological New Material. "We consider Sulzer an extremely valuable partner in this project. The company’s comprehensive technical services and cutting-edge production technologies for PLA will help us to effectively produce sustainable plastics and meet our customers’ strategic demands."

"We are excited to support Yangzhou Huitong Biological New Material in their flagship project," said Torsten Wintergerste, Division President of Sulzer Chemtech. "Our PLA technologies are currently used in most PLA facilities worldwide. We couldn’t be prouder to be supporting customers with monomer purification and polymer production units that are helping advance the sustainable and circular plastics sector."

As per MRC, Sulzer Chemtech has finalized an agreement with Encina Development Group, LLC to provide technology to recover high purity circular aromatics from cracked oil products derived from Encina’s mixed-plastics-to-aromatics catalytic conversion platform. Encina’s 1000 tpd waste plastics recycling facility will be located in Northeast US, and is expected to be operational in 2024.

As MRC informed before, India’s national objective of achieving self-sufficiency in energy and reducing its fossil fuel footprint is being supported by Sulzer’s expertise in pump manufacturing and refinery processes. The country’s first bio-refinery, Assam Bio Refinery Pvt Ltd., built by Chempolis' technology, is a ground-breaking JV that will be the only refinery in the world to create bioethanol from bamboo - available in abundance in north-eastern India. To help realize this pioneering endeavor, Sulzer is delivering a range of engineered application pumps as well as core technology such as column internals for the refining process.

Alpla acquires Texplast and PET Recycling Team Wolfen

Alpla acquires Texplast and PET Recycling Team Wolfen

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Austrian packaging and recycling company Alpla is expanding its recycling capacity in Germany following the acquisition of Texplast and PET Recycling Team Wolfen, said Nspackaging.

Focussing on the German bottle-to-bottle market, the acquisition of the two companies will increase Alpla’s annual processing volume of polyethylene terephthalate (PET) bottles in Germany to 75,000 tonnes/year. The acquisition was officially finalised on 25 February 2022. The parties have agreed not to disclose the purchase price or any further details. The acquisition is subject to the legal and regulatory approval of the competition authorities.

The combined processing capacity of Texplast and PET Recycling Team Wolfen is around 55,000 tonnes/year, according to Alpla. The company acquired BTB Recycling in October 2021, which has a processing capacity of around 20,000 tonnes/year.

Texplast produces PET pellets and flakes from used PET bottles. The pellets are primarily used for preforms for new PET bottles. The colourful PET flakes produced during the process are used by the packaging manufacturer FROMM to produce packing straps. FROMM will continue to have exclusive access to the coloured flakes produced from the German facility.

PET Recycling Team Wolfen specialises in the recycling of PET bottles from ‘yellow bag’ – the German bin for household recyclables. These are returned from household collection to the recycling loop.

As MRC, Alpla will build a new 23,000 square-metre manufacturing plant in Kansas City, Missouri. Alpla Group, a global packaging solutions manufacturer and recycling specialist headquartered in Hard, Austria, announced that it has selected the Kansas City region for its new 23,000-square-metre manufacturing plant.

As MRC informed earlier, Alpla and Krones developed a returnable PET container that provides an optimal environment for sensitive ESL (Extended Shelf Life) products such as juice and milk in the cold chain.

Alpla, with about 21,600 employees, produces custom-made packaging systems, bottles, caps and moulded parts at 178 sites across 45 countries. It also operates recycling plants for polyethylene terephthalate (PET) and high density polyethylene (HDPE).

Alfa Laval update on Ukraine and Russia

Alfa Laval update on Ukraine and Russia

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Alfa Laval has taken the decision to pause all shipments in and out of Russia, said the company.

The priority for Alfa Laval is to ensure the safety and wellbeing of its employees and provide support to those in the affected areas.

The Russian invasion of Ukraine is affecting Alfa Laval in many ways. The priority for Alfa Laval is to ensure the safety and wellbeing of its employees. Alfa Laval is providing financial and other support to affected employees. As the war is escalating, Alfa Laval will continue to review how to support and help its employees in the area – in the short and the long term. In addition, Alfa Laval will evaluate how it can further support the victims of the conflict.

Alfa Laval has decided to pause all shipments in and out of Russia. Historically the order intake from the markets in Russia and Ukraine has been approximately SEK 1 billion per year, equivalent to 2 percent of the total company. In parallel, an evaluation is being made of the existing orders and open projects. The total order book in Russia and Ukraine amounts to approximately SEK 750 million. The integrity of the order book will be re-assessed in connection with the first quarter report. In addition, some negative result effects are expected due to difficulties in completing ongoing projects.

Alfa Laval has a competent team of 240 employees in Russia and Ukraine. The team will be maintained despite the expected low utilization in the near term, while assessing the longer-term implications of the war on the Russian market.

As per MRC, Alfa Laval, a leading global provider of specialized products and engineering solutions based on its key technologies of heat transfer, separation and fluid handling, has strengthened its operations in the United States with three new facilities, expanding its commitment to serving its customers in the United States.

As MRC wrote before, in 2017, Alfa Laval won an order to supply compact heat exchangers to a refinery in China. The order has a value of approximately USD10.6 MM. It was booked late June in the Gasketed Plate Heat Exchangers unit of the Energy Division, with deliveries scheduled for 2018.

Alfa Laval is a world leader in heat transfer, centrifugal separation and fluid handling, and is active in the areas of Energy, Marine, and Food & Water, offering its expertise, products, and service to a wide range of industries in some 100 countries. The company is committed to optimizing processes, creating responsible growth, and driving progress to support customers in achieving their business goals and sustainability targets.

Saudi Aramco and Sinopec strengthen ties with potential downstream collaboration

Saudi Aramco and Sinopec strengthen ties with potential downstream collaboration

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Saudi Aramco through its Saudi Aramco Asia Company (SAAC) subsidiary signed a MoU with China Petroleum & Chemical Corporation (Sinopec) for potential downstream collaboration in China, said Hydrocarbonprocessing.

SAAC and Sinopec also aim to support Fujian Refining and Petrochemical Company (FREP) in conducting a feasibility study into the optimization and expansion of capacity. This MoU provides a basis for continued downstream collaboration between Aramco and Sinopec, capitalizing on each company’s strengths and their long-term relationship through existing JVs, namely FREP and Sinopec Senmei (Fujian) Petroleum Company (SSPC) in China, and Yanbu Aramco Sinopec Refining Company in Saudi Arabia.

Mohammed Y. Al Qahtani, Aramco Senior Vice President of Downstream, said: “This MoU represents an exciting new chapter in our long-standing relationship with Sinopec. Such collaborations promote our downstream integration and expansion strategy in Asia and support our broader objectives of becoming a global leader in liquids-to-chemicals and a resilient and reliable supplier of one of the lowest upstream carbon intensity oils to meet China’s growing demand."

Yu Baocai, President of Sinopec Corporation, said: "Sinopec and Aramco enjoy a long history bookmarked by numerous examples of successful cooperation, which continues to strengthen our strategic relationship. Both companies cooperate in mutually beneficial crude trading, refining and chemical joint ventures, engineering services as well as science and technology research and development. Together such collaboration represents a model of energy cooperation between China and Saudi Arabia. The signing of this MoU will support our refinery feedstock optimization and downstream petrochemical development, while offering new opportunities to deepen and expand activity amid an accelerating global energy transition."

As per MRC, Sinopec revealed it has completed the construction of China's first megaton CCUS project, the Qilu-Shengli Oilfield CCUS. The project will reduce carbon emissions by 1 MMtpy. As China's largest full industrial chain CCUS demonstration base and industry benchmark, the Project is estimated to increase the oil production by 2.965 MMt in the next 15 years. It's of great significance to China's scaled development of CCUS and building an "artificial carbon cycle" model to increase China's carbon emissions reduction capabilities as the country advances to achieve the "dual carbon" goals of reaching peak carbon emissions by 2030 and carbon neutrality by 2060.

Sinopec has set up a separate company to work on projects in the field of alternative energy sources. The authorized capital of the company, which received the name Zhongshihua Xiongan Xinnenyuan (Zhongshihua Xiong'an Xinnengyuan), amounted to 100 million yuan (USD15.7 million). Li Yutian has been appointed as its legal representative.

Earlier it was reported that SIBUR, the largest petrochemical complex in Russia and Eastern Europe, and the Chinese petrochemical giant - Sinopec - raised project financing for the Amur Gas Chemical Complex (GCC) from a syndicate of international, Chinese and Russian banks for a total of USD9.1 bn.