Shin-Etsu Chemical temporarily suspended operations due to earthquake

Shin-Etsu Chemical temporarily suspended operations due to earthquake

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Due to the earthquake that occurred at around 11:36 p.m. on Wednesday evening March 16th, whose epicenter was located off the Pacific coast of the northeastern region of Japan, Shin-Etsu Chemical and some of the Shin-Etsu Group Companies’ plants temporarily suspended operations, said the company.

No plant employees suffered any injuries, and there was no large damage to the facilities.

With safety as our utmost priority, the plants that temporarily suspended operations are sequentially resuming their operations upon carrying out the process of inspections to confirm plant safety.

We remind, on 16 Feb 2022, Shin-Etsu Chemical Co Ltd announced plans to invest over $695 M to expand its silicone manufacturing plants across Japan to meet a very strong demand for advanced functional products. According to the company, the new plant investments will expand the manufacturing capacity of "highly diversified" kinds of silicone resins, fluids, and rubber end products by 2025. The expansion project will start with Shin-Etsu's main facility, the Gunma Complex in Gunma Prefecture, and will be followed by two other facilities in Naoetsu, Niigata Prefecture, and Takefu, Fukui Prefecture.

Topsoe to raise prices on catalysts due to higher feedstock and energy prices

Topsoe to raise prices on catalysts due to higher feedstock and energy prices

MOSCOW (MRC) -- As a result of the increasing raw material price of nonferrous metals, natural gas, electricity and other key raw materials used in its catalyst production process, Topsoe will increase prices across its catalyst product line, according to Hydrocarbonprocessing.

The general price adjustment will take effect immediately.

As MRC reported earlier, in February 2021, Haldor Topsoe and Acron Group signed a MoU with the purpose of jointly working within green technologies area. The MoU includes initiatives within joint development of technologies aimed to reduce GHG emissions (СО2 and N2O) at the existing production sites of Acron Group and development of promising projects for new products with minimum environmental impact. Acron Engineering, a Russian engineering research center, which is a part of Acron Group, will be engaged in the work.

We remind that in October 2021, Dow (Midland, Michigan), the world's petrochemical major, and Haldor Topsoe partnered to promote the circular economy. About 300 million tons of plastic waste is produced every year on a global scale. The partnership between Dow and Topsoe marks a new initiative to efficiently convert waste plastics to circular plastics, keeping them out of the environment and responsibly reclaiming their value.

Plans include Dow to proceed with the design and engineering for a 10,000 ton per year market development unit using Haldor Topsoe’s PureStepTM technology to purify pyrolysis oil feedstock derived from waste plastics for use in circular products. Dow’s development unit will advance the technology for industrial-scale purification of circular feedstocks, which will be used to meet strong market demand for circular polyethylene (PE).

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.

Azelis acquired WhitChem in the UK

Azelis acquired WhitChem in the UK

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Azelis announces the acquisition of 100% of the shares of Whitfield Chemical Group Limited, a well-regarded distributor focused on coatings, adhesives, sealants and elastomers and rubber & plastic additives in the UK, said the company.

This acquisition reinforces Azelis’ position in industrial chemicals, and specifically in the CASE and R&PA market segments in the UK. WhitChem’s long-standing relationships with blue-chip principals and product portfolio strengthen Azelis’ lateral value chain in the UK, whilst their wide customer base and strong local technical sales team further expands the Group’s product offering and customer reach.

WhitChem employs 30 staff and generates the vast majority of their sales in the UK, with some exports to Ireland. Following the closing, the WhitChem management will stay and support the integration into Azelis, remain committed to growing the business, and further strengthen Azelis’ CASE & R&PA team.

As MRC informed earlier, in June 2021, Azelis announced the extension of its distribution scope with CP Kelco in India, Indonesia, Malaysia and Thailand. CP Kelco’s product range is a significant addition to Azelis’ portfolio and the new agreement marks an important milestone in the strong and continuously developing collaboration between both companies globally.

Besides, Azelis made two acquisitions in July, 2021, both in South Korea. The most recent agreement, announced on Jul. 14, is the proposed takeover of Seoul-headquartered Coseal, which specializes in the distribution, repackaging and blending of agricultural/horticultural surfactants. This transaction is expected to close in the third quarter of 2021, when all of Coseal’s 45 employees, along with its owner and CEO Sang Jin Kang, will transfer to the Belgium-based distributor.

Nearly two weeks earlier, on Jul. 1, Azelis revealed it had purchased MH, a local distributor in the food ingredients market, providing the multinational specialty chemicals distribution group with a foothold in the food and health segment. Also headquartered in Seoul, MH is a family-owned business, supplying products such as gluten, starches, sweeteners and functional food ingredients.

Azelis is a leading distributor of speciality chemicals and food ingredients present in over 50 countries across the globe with around 2,200 employees. Our knowledgeable teams of industry, market and technical experts are each dedicated to a specific market within Life Sciences and Industrial Chemicals.

Reliance may avoid buying Russian fuel after sanctions

Reliance may avoid buying Russian fuel after sanctions

MOSCOW (MRC) -- India's Reliance Industries, operator of the world's biggest refining complex, may avoid buying Russian fuels for its plants following western sanctions on Moscow over its invasion of Ukraine, reported Reuters with reference to a senior company official's statement.

"Even if we can source some of the feeds (from Russia), probably we will be out of it because of the sanctions," Rajesh Rawat, senior vice president and business head cracker, told an industry event on Wednesday.

Reliance buys Urals crude and straight run fuel oil for its refineries from Russia. The private refiner mostly buys its petrochemical feedstock from the Middle East and the US.

Sanctions on Russia have prompted many companies and countries to shun its oil, depressing Russian crude to record discount levels.

Rawat said in India most of the oil supplies from Russia are going to the state-run companies.

"So probably, those feed streams will still continue, or may have a lesser impact compared to the private sector players. Because we deal with banks, and also even if we can source some of the feeds (from Russia), probably we will be out of it because of the sanctions," Rawat told the Asia Refining and Petrochemical Summit.

As MRC informed before, in November 2021, Reliance Industries and Saudi Aramco decided to re-evaluate their agreement for the Middle Eastern producer to buy a stake in the refining and petrochemical business of India's biggest private refiner, and both companies would look at broader areas of cooperation due to the changing energy scenario.

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.

Reliance Industries is one of the world's largest producers of polymers. The company produces polypropylene, polyethylene and polyvinyl chloride and other petrochemical products.

LyondellBasell launched groundbreaking cosmetic tubes and caps for LOCCITANE

LyondellBasell launched groundbreaking cosmetic tubes and caps for LOCCITANE

MOSCOW (MRC) -- LyondellBasell, Albea Tubes and L’OCCITANE en Provence have recently launched groundbreaking cosmetic tubes and caps for L’OCCITANE en Provence’s “almond” range, supporting the circular economy, said the company.

The packaging is made by Albea Tubes with CirculenRevive polymers from LyondellBasell. The protection of biodiversity and the reduction of waste are at the heart of the international beauty brand L’OCCITANE en Provence. Therefore, when re-designing two tubes of its “almond” product range, L’OCCITANE was seeking a resource-friendly solution and teamed up with cosmetic tubes specialist Albea and polymer supplier LyondellBasell.

As per MRC, LyondellBasell Industries will turn down new business opportunities with Russian state-owned entities, and plans to discontinue existing business with those entities as well. Houston-based LyondellBasell also is donating 200,000 euros (USD220,000) to relief efforts in Ukraine.

As MRC informed earlier, three US subsidiaries of Dutch chemical giant LyondellBasell Industries N.V. (LBI) have agreed to make upgrades and perform compliance measures estimated to cost USD50 million to resolve allegations they violated the Clean Air Act and state air pollution control laws at six petrochemical manufacturing facilities located in Channelview, Corpus Christi, and LaPorte, Texas, and Clinton, Iowa, according to the Department of Justice and the US Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) statement.

LyondellBasell is one of the largest plastics, chemicals and refining companies in the world. Driven by its employees around the globe, LyondellBasell produces materials and products that are key to advancing solutions to modern challenges, like enhancing food safety through lightweight and flexible packaging, protecting the purity of water supplies through stronger and more versatile pipes, improving the safety, comfort and fuel efficiency of many of the cars and trucks on the road, and ensuring the safe and effective functionality in electronics and appliances. LyondellBasell sells products into more than 100 countries and is the world"s largest producer of polymer compounds and the largest licensor of polyolefin technologies. In 2020, LyondellBasell was named to Fortune Magazine"s list of the "World"s Most Admired Companies" for the third consecutive year.