Singapore non-oil exports expand at slower pace of 7% in July

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Singapore's non-oil domestic exports (NODX) grew at a slower pace of 7 per cent year-on-year in July after the revised 8.5 per cent growth in June, expanding for the 20th straight month, said Channelnewsasia.

Both electronics and non-electronics exports increased, and exports to the top 10 markets as a whole rose, mainly due to the 27 European Union countries, Malaysia and Taiwan, according to official data released by Enterprise Singapore (ESG) on Wednesday (Aug 17).

However, NODX to China, Japan, Hong Kong and Thailand declined. On a month-on-month seasonally adjusted basis, NODX increased at a slower pace of 1.4 per cent in July, following the previous month's revised 3.2 per cent growth. Both electronics and non-electronics grew.

On a seasonally adjusted basis, the level of NODX reached SD17.8 billion in July, slightly higher than the previous month's adjusted SD17.6 billion, as well as levels a year ago. NODX rose over the year, mainly due to shipments of non-electronics. Electronics also grew. On a year-on-year basis, electronic NODX rose by 10.3 per cent in July, following the 4.1 per cent growth in the previous month.

Integrated circuits, parts of integrated circuits and disk drives rose by 18.5 per cent, 83.2 per cent and 110.2 per cent respectively, contributing the most to the growth in electronic NODX. Non-electronic NODX increased by 6.1 per cent in July on a year-on-year basis, following the revised 10 per cent rise the previous month. Specialised machinery, pharmaceuticals and structures of ships and boats contributed the most to the growth in non-electronic NODX.

As per MRC, the value of Singapore's non-oil domestic exports (NODX) rose 6.4% year over year in April, slower than the 7.7% expansion in March, as exports of electronic products fell on a monthly basis. The pace of growth in April was almost in line with the market's consensus forecast, according to ING Bank economist Nicholas Mapa. The city-state's exports of electronic products rose 12.8% year over year in April, faster than the 11.5% expansion in March, driven by strong shipments of integrated circuits, IC parts and telecommunications equipment.

North American weekly chemical railcar traffic rises 1.0%

North American weekly chemical railcar traffic  rises 1.0%

MOSCOW (MRC) -- North American chemical railcar traffic rose by 1.0% year on year to 46,133 loadings for the week ended 13 August, according to the latest freight rail data from the Association of American Railroads (AAR).

Increases in Canada and Mexico more than offset an 0.2% decline in US shipments. The week before, North American chemical railcar traffic fell by 1.1%. The four-week average for North American chemical rail traffic was at 46,706 railcar loadings, holding nearly unchanged week on week.

For the first 32 weeks of 2022 ended 13 August, North American chemical railcar traffic was up 2.2% year on year to 1,494,580 railcar loadings. In the US, chemical railcar loadings represent about 20% of chemical transportation by tonnage, with trucks, barges and pipelines carrying the rest. In Canada, producers rely on rail to ship more than 70% of their products, with some exclusively using rail.

Shipments of chemicals, coal, motor vehicles and parts, and nonmetallic minerals rose for the first 32 weeks, while shipments in all other freight railcar categories fell.

We remind, North American chemical railcar traffic fell by 1.1% year on year to 45,842 loadings for the week ended 6 August. Increases in Canada and Mexico were more than offset by a 4.1% decline in US shipments. The week before, North American chemical railcar traffic rose 2.1%.

Wood awarded two major multi-million-dollar projects in Uzbekistan

Wood awarded two major multi-million-dollar projects in Uzbekistan

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Wood, the global consulting and engineering company, has secured two new contracts from Enter Engineering with a combined value of over USD200 million, to deliver major capital investment projects in Uzbekistan, said the company.

The first will see Wood’s Projects business deliver the full engineering scope, including front-end engineering design (FEED) and detailed design for a world-class mineral processing plant. The MOF-3 copper-concentration complex, in the city of Almalyk, will also require Wood’s technical assistance during the procurement, construction, commissioning and start-up stages to deliver the world’s largest copper concentrator, Wood says.

Back in June, Metso Outotec announced it had signed a contract to deliver key process technology to the MOF3 copper-gold-molybdenum concentrator complex, owned by Almalyk Mining and Metallurgical Company. Wood will also provide detailed engineering and procurement assistance services to build a new methanol-to-olefin-based gas-chemical complex, located in the Bukhara region.

Giuseppe Zuccaro, President of Process & Chemicals at Wood, said: “These projects mark a significant and strategic investment in Uzbekistan as the country accelerates its economic diversification plan, satisfying the needs of its domestic industries while also meeting the world’s surging demand for special petrochemical products and energy transition materials.

"Our extensive experience in delivering complex mining and petrochemical projects of scale and our proven ability to operate a global execution model continue to position us as the ideal technical partner. We’re delighted to build on our strong relationship with Enter Engineering and look forward to working closely to achieve the full value of the investment in these world-class projects."

At peak, the MOF-3 and MTO projects will each require the support of over 400 colleagues from across Wood offices, including Chennai, Johannesburg, Madrid, Milan, Santiago, Singapore and Woking, in addition to Wood’s newly established office in Tashkent, Uzbekistan.

We remind, Wood has secured a new contract with INEOS in excess of USD100 million to deliver engineering, procurement, and construction management (EPCm) services for Project One, a new state-of-the-art petrochemicals complex in Antwerp, Belgium, which will deliver an ethane cracker with the lowest carbon footprint in Europe.

Mitsui Chemicals and Teijin to produce biomass-derived BPA and polycarbonate

Mitsui Chemicals and Teijin to produce biomass-derived BPA and polycarbonate

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Mitsui Chemicals, Inc. (Tokyo) and Teijin Ltd. (Toyko) jointly announced that they will become Japan’s first companies to develop and market biomass-derived bisphenol A (BPA) and polycarbonate (PC) resins, that will support efforts to achieve carbon neutrality by reducing greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions throughout product lifecycles, said Chemengonline.

The joint initiative follows Mitsui Chemicals’ receipt of ISCC PLUS certification from the International Sustainability and Carbon Certification (ISCC), based on which Mitsui Chemicals will begin supplying biomass BPA produced with the mass-balance approach. In the ISCC PLUS-certified mass-balance approach, materials are verifiably tracked through complex value chains, as in the case of biomass-derived raw materials being mixed with petroleum-derived raw materials to create products.

Teijin also will begin developing and producing biomass PC resin using the same BPA. In May 2022, Mitsui Chemicals acquired ISCC PLUS certification for BPA raw material used in PC resins. Mitsui Chemicals will now become the first Japanese company to produce commercial biomass-derived BPA offering the same physical characteristics as those of conventional petroleum-derived BPA.

Teijin will procure biomass-derived BPA from Mitsui Chemicals to produce biomass- derived PC resins possessing the same physical characteristics as the company’s existing petroleum-derived PC resins, which will allow these new biomass-derived versions to be used in commercial applications such as automotive headlamps and electronic components.

As per MRC, Mitsui Chemicals, Inc. announced that it has formed an agreement to acquire the pellicle business of Asahi Kasei Corporation. According to Mitsui Chemical’s Long-Term Business plan VISION 2030, it is aiming with creating and growing a "unique" ICT Solutions business to grow products that will let it create and grow operations here into our third pillar of earnings under the business portfolio transformation. This will see the pellicle business in particular positioned as a key product lineup on the ICT materials front, as well as a business to focus on further going forward. Hopes then are to offer highly competitive new products and solutions that contribute to innovation in the semiconductor production process, allowing Mitsui Chemicals to serve as the number one manufacturer of cutting-edge pellicles.

Sasol Chemicals plans to double its use of green steam

Sasol Chemicals plans to double its use of green steam

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Sasol Chemicals, a business unit of Sasol Ltd. (Johannesburg, South Africa),plans to double its use of green steam from a first of its kind biomass cogeneration facility adjacent to its Brunsbuttel, Germany facility, said the company.

Sasol Chemicals will lease land adjacent to its plant to Hamburger Energiewerke, Hamburg’s municipal utility, which plans to build the facility by the end of 2024. When fully operational in 2025, the plant will supply at least 70,000 megawatt hours of steam to Sasol each year, enabling the company to reduce its CO2 emissions from the plant by approximately 13,000 metric tons annually. In addition to green steam, the plant will produce more than 90,000 megawatt hours of sustainable electricity annually.

"This is another important step towards meeting our ambitious long-term sustainability objectives,” said Jens Straatmann, Senior Vice President, Eurasia Chemicals. “Increasing the use of green steam is a key enabler of further reducing our greenhouse gas emissions and will get us closer to our goal of reducing our scope 1 and scope 2 emissions by 30 percent by 2030."

The facility will be the first large–scale power generation plant to operate almost exclusively with well-pressed or dried fermentation residues. That feedstock will be sourced from plants that are certified under Germany’s Renewable Energy Sources Act. The plant will benefit local agriculture because much of this material is surplus that is currently going to waste; now, it will become the heat source for the chemical building blocks of products used in personal care, cleaning and industrial applications.

Since 2014 the Brunsbuttel facility has used green steam from another nearby biomass facility. The two facilities combined will be able to supply half of the plant’s steam consumption.

Sasol’s Brunsbuttel facility, its largest in Germany, is located 80 kilometres (50 miles) northwest of Hamburg near the Kiel Canal and produces a broad range of organic and inorganic products. The site’s organic products are used in a range of daily applications including detergents and cleaning agents, cosmetics, and pharmaceuticals, as well as in various technical applications. The site’s inorganic products are key components in catalysts, high-performance abrasives, and polymer additives.

We remind, Sasol Ltd will restart its refinery by the end of July, it said on Sunday, after the company declared force majeure at its second biggest refinery. The shutdown of the Natref refinery located around 100 kilometres from Johannesburg has sparked concerns of petrol and diesel shortages in the country where 60% of fuel products are imported. Sasol, however, said it did not expect any shortages.