Eni and the Republic of Benin to jointly develop industrial chain for biorefining

Eni and the Republic of Benin to jointly develop industrial chain for biorefining

Eni and the Minister of Agriculture, Livestock and Fisheries of the Republic of Benin signs a cooperation agreement to develop joint initiatives on the agro-industrial chain, for biorefining use, according to Hydrocarbonprocessing.

Under the terms of the agreement, the parts will evaluate potential opportunities in the country in the field of agriculture and vegetable raw material to develop oil crops for Eni’s biorefining system.

The agreement will allow Eni to contribute to the development of new industrial models in the country, ensuring the sustainability along the whole agro-feedstock supply chain. It will play a key role in the energy transition for both Eni and the Republic of Benin, which is already a net negative CO2 issuer.

As MRC wrote earlier, Eni is evaluating conversion of its Livorno refinery in northwest Italy into a biorefinery, as part of the Italian company's wider strategy to make its activities more environmentally sustainable. Eni has already converted two of its Italian refineries and is looking to almost double its biorefining capacity to around 2 million mt/year by 2024, and expand this to at least five times by 2050, as part of its pledge to achieve complete carbon neutrality by 2050.

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 2,487,450 tonnes in 2021, up by 13% year on year. Shipments of all grades of ethylene polymers increased. At the same time, PP shipments to the Russian market totalled 1,494.280 tonnes, up by 21% year on year. Deliveries of homopolymer PP and PP block copolymers increased, whreas.shipments of PP random copolymers decreased significantly.

Eni, abbreviation of Ente Nazionale Idrocarburi, in full Eni SpA, Italian energy company operating primarily in petroleum, natural gas, and petrochemicals. Established in 1953, it is one of Europe's largest oil companies in terms of sales.

Akzo Nobel expects Russian operations to fold in weeks

Akzo Nobel expects Russian operations to fold in weeks

AkzoNobel expects business in Russia to wind down in the next couple of months due to difficulties accessing raw materials and the increasing deterioration of supply chains, said the company.

The firm, which operates four plants in the country, expects its Russian assets to go out of business within the next couple of months due to the impact of sanctions imposed on the country and intensifying supply chain disruption, as well as the ability of key customers to finance orders.

AkzoNobel is the latest producer to forecast a wind-down of Russian operations, after Germany-based LANXESS stated that it would cease business in the country as completely as contracts allow.

Most European oil and gas players have announced plans to pull out of Russia and divest stakes in joint ventures in the country, while Borealis stated don 11 March that it does not intend to accept an offer to acquire its fertilizers business from EuroChem, a Switzerland-headquartered player with most of its operations in Russia.

As per MRC, AkzoNobel strengthened its paints business and footprint in Spain by completing the acquisition of 100% of the shares of Spanish decorative paints maker Titan Paints for an undisclosed fee. The transaction includes Titan Paints' three production plants in El Prat (Barcelona), Las Palmas (Canary Islands), and Maia in Portugal, seven logistics and service centers for decorative paints, the company said in a statement. Titan Paints generated sales of about EUR80m in 2019 and has 425 employees. The deal was first announced in October 2020.

As MRC previously reported, AkzoNobel completed a capacity expansion at its industrial coatings plant in Songjiang, near Shanghai, China, in March 202, doubling its packaging lacquer and coating capacity. After expansion, the plant became one of the world's largest enterprises for the production of industrial coatings, as well as epoxy and polyester resins.

AkzoNobel is the world's largest manufacturer of paints and coatings, also a leader in specialty chemicals.

BASF launched a new fluid catalytic cracking catalyst

BASF launched a new fluid catalytic cracking catalyst

BASF launched a new fluid catalytic cracking catalyst designed to maximize butylenes from resid feedstocks, said Hydrocarbonprocessing.

Fortitude, the latest product based on BASF’s multiple framework topology (MFT) technology, is optimized to deliver superior selectivity to butylenes while maintaining catalyst activity.

MFT technology enhances performance through the use of more than one framework topology working together to tailor the catalyst selectivity profile. Fourtitude combines the benefits of MFT and metals passivation technologies to deliver superior butylenes selectivity and metals resistance for resid feedstock applications. The superior butylenes selectivity is achieved by employing a specialty zeolite framework that is more effective at cracking small olefins to butylene.

Fourtitude refinery trials have validated its ability to deliver improved performance for refiners through increased butylenes and propylene yields, increased gasoline octane and improved coke selectivity.

"Fourtitude is an important addition to BASF’s industry-leading and advanced refinery catalysts portfolio,” said Detlef Ruff, Senior Vice President, Process Catalysts at BASF. “We are pleased to introduce an innovative product to help our customers processing resid feedstocks to improve butylenes selectivity and overall performance of refineries."

As per MRC, BASF, the world's petrochemical major, is strengthening its global catalyst development and helping customers to bring new products faster to the market. As part of this strategy, BASF is building a new pilot plant center at its Ludwigshafen site. The new Catalyst Development and Solids Processing Center will serve as a global hub for pilot-scale production and process innovations of chemical catalysts.

BASF is the leading chemical company. It produces a wide range of chemicals, for example solvents, amines, resins, glues, electronic-grade chemicals, industrial gases, basic petrochemicals and inorganic chemicals. The most important customers for this segment are the pharmaceutical, construction, textile and automotive industries.

LANXESS suspends its business in Russia

LANXESS suspends its business in Russia

German speciality chemicals maker LANXESS on Friday said it was suspending its business activities in Russia due to the war in Ukraine, reported Reuters.

Thus, the company had “suspended business activities with Russian customers as far as contractually possible until further notice” and had suspended all investments in Russia.

Its sales in Russia and Ukraine made up less than 1% of its global sales, it said.

Sanctions imposed by Western countries on Russia following its invasion of Ukraine have fuelled a global surge in wholesale power and gas prices, which chemical companies are attempting to offset by passing the increases on to customers.

As MRC reported before, in October 2021, specialty chemicals company LANXESS and energy company bp entered into a strategic partnership for the use of sustainable raw materials in high-tech plastics production. bp will supply sustainably produced cyclohexane to the LANXESS’ production site in Antwerp, Belgium, starting in the fourth quarter of 2021. The sustainable origin of the raw materials is certified according to ISCC Plus rules (“International Sustainability and Carbon Certification”). With this partnership, both companies, which already have a long-standing business relationship, want to significantly advance the production of sustainable plastics.

According to MRC's ScanPlast report, Russia's estimated consumption of unmixed PVC was about 999,300 tonnes in 2021, up by 7% year on year. The emulsion and suspension PVC market showed stronger demand, despite over a twofold price increase. December estimated SPVC consumption was 81,200 tonnes (excluding deliveries to the Republic of Belarus and the Republic of Kazakhstan) versus 74,690 tonnes a month earlier.

LANXESS is a leading specialty chemicals company with about 19,200 employees in 25 countries. The company is currently represented at 74 production sites worldwide. The core business of Lanxess is the development, manufacturing and marketing of chemical intermediates, additives, specialty chemicals and plastics. Through Arlanxeo, the joint venture with Saudi Aramco, Lanxess is also a leading supplier of synthetic rubber.

Encina secures USD55 mln for plastic waste-to-aromatics recycling business

Encina secures USD55  mln for plastic waste-to-aromatics recycling business

Encina Development Group, a producer of circular chemicals from waste materials, announced that it has secured a total of USD55 MM of equity capital, which included participation from institutional investors IMM Investment Global and SW Recycle Fund through a USD32 MM private placement, said Hydrocarbonprocessing.

The private placement was oversubscribed following strong institutional support. IMM Global will join the company’s board of directors as a result of their investment. Encina will use the newly secured capital, in addition to USD20 MM in earlier secured equity financing, to move forward with the commercialization of its plastic waste-to-aromatics recycling business.

Encina’s circular chemical products are marketed to global customers who adhere to ISCC+ certification standards, and who are seeking to manufacture end products requiring circular content in their products. Current projects include planned facilities in the U.S., as well as offshore projects in Asia and South America. Each of the facilities is expected to process approximately 450,000 tpy of plastic waste material.

"We would like to thank all of our shareholders for their strong support, and faith in our management team. We are committed to deploying our technology to capture waste streams such as plastic scrap, which would have been harmful to the environment through possible incineration, land filled, or ocean waste – which can now be reclaimed and used as feedstock to produce circular chemicals to help foster better environmental outcomes for everyone on a global basis,” said Mr. David Schwedel, Founder and Executive Director for Encina.

Youngjoon Lee, CEO and Managing Partner of IMM Global said, “we are excited to partner with Encina to further drive the company’s growth plan, and we are aligned with their goals to help foster a circular economy on a global basis. Encina has a world class management team, operating technology, and a scalable platform that is well positioned to expand at multiple locations in the coming years."

As per MRC, Encina Development Group (Encina; The Woodlands, Texas) and Flint Hills Resources say they are exploring a collaboration to produce renewable chemicals and fuels from plastic waste. The two have signed a non-binding term sheet that proposes construction of a facility in Corpus Christi, Texas. Flint Hills would market the aromatic products produced at the Encina Corpus Christi facility and work with its affiliates to market renewable aromatic products from other Encina plants in the US.