Fluor awarded two contracts for the BASF Zhanjiang Verbund site project in China

Fluor awarded two contracts for the BASF Zhanjiang Verbund site project in China

-MOSCOW (MRC) -- Fluor Corporation announced that the company was awarded two reimbursable engineering, procurement and construction management contracts by BASF for the ethylene oxide/ethylene glycol and infrastructure, offsites and utilities packages as part of the company’s new Verbund program in Zhanjiang, Guangdong province, China, said the company.

The contract value to Fluor is more than USD2 billion and was booked in the third quarter of 2022. "Fluor values this longstanding relationship and looks forward to continuing this trusted partnership.”

“Over the past 20 years, Fluor has executed a significant amount of work with BASF in China,” said Jim Breuer, group president of Fluor’s Energy Solutions business. “Fluor values this longstanding relationship and looks forward to continuing this trusted partnership."

Fluor’s project scope of work for BASF’s Zhanjiang Verbund site project consists of two primary packages including the ethylene oxide/ethylene glycol derivative unit and the infrastructure, offsites and utilities scope, comprised of site infrastructure, utility generation and site logistics. Fluor is also performing services as part of the centralized program management team activities.

The project will be led by Fluor’s Shanghai, China, office.

We remind, Fluor (Irving, Texas) has recently announced an organizational revamp that “better aligns its business with identified growth markets and company strategy” after conducting a strategic review. The company is initiating plans to sell its subsidiary Stork (Utrecht, Netherlands) as part of the revamp, it says. Starting in the first quarter of 2021, Fluor will conduct its operations in three business segments - Energy Solutions, Urban Solutions, and Mission Solutions. The energy solutions business will be focused on energy transition, chemicals, and traditional oil and gas opportunities, according to Fluor.

Fluor Corporation is building a better future by applying world-class expertise to solve its clients’ greatest challenges. Fluor’s 41,000 employees provide professional and technical solutions that deliver safe, well-executed, capital-efficient projects to clients around the world. Fluor had revenue of USD12.4 billion in 2021 and is ranked 259 among the Fortune 500 companies. With headquarters in Irving, Texas, Fluor has provided engineering, procurement and construction services for more than 110 years.

Neste Completes Neste Engineering Solutions Oy Merger

Neste Completes Neste Engineering Solutions Oy Merger

MOSCOW (MRC) -- On October 1, 2022, Neste merged its wholly-owned subsidiary Neste Engineering Solutions Oy into Neste Corporation, said the company.

The move only affects the company’s operations in Finland and Neste’s Engineering Solutions unit will now oversee the business of the newly merged company.

In April 2022, Neste announced that it would merge the company’s wholly-owned subsidiary Neste Engineering Solutions Oy (Nes) into Neste Corporation. The plan has now been completed and the merger took place on October 1, 2022. The merger affects only the Finnish operations. The entire Nes personnel in Finland will be transferred to Neste Corporation. Nes’ business will now be conducted by the Engineering Solutions unit.

We remind, Neste Corporation and Marathon Petroleum Corporation (Marathon) announced an agreement to establish a 50/50 joint venture to produce renewable diesel following a conversion project of Marathon's refinery in Martinez, California. All required closing conditions have been met, including the receipt of the necessary permits and regulatory approvals, and Neste and Marathon have today closed the transaction for the establishment of the joint venture to be called Martinez Renewables.

Borealis restarts PDH construction site in Kallo with Ponticelli as contractor

Borealis restarts PDH construction site in Kallo with Ponticelli as contractor

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Following a standstill for 80% of the construction works in the Kallo PDH project, Borealis carried out a re-tendering process for the Mechanical and Piping construction works, said the company.

After careful consideration, Borealis has now granted a majority of these works to the contractor Ponticelli. Works on the construction site will now further gradually increase as of 3 October 2022.

The prolonged standstill and gradual re-start of the project has consequences for the timeline of the project. Borealis expects start-up of the new PDH plant during the second half of 2024.

Borealis has zero tolerance for any malpractices. Borealis has implemented these measures to identify and address any potential lack of control by (sub)contractors:

All workers and (sub)contractors are informed and encouraged to make use of Borealis’ ethics hotline. This tool is accessible for Borealis workers and externals and allows for ethics-related concerns to be filed in 24 languages. In this way we can best early detect wrongdoings and take the required measures in the shortest timeframe
Borealis has reinforced its contractor auditing and vetting process to ensure that our contractors are effectively controlling their subcontractors.

To ensure further compliance, we ask each contractor and subcontractor to sign a formal binding declaration prior to deployment on the site in which they formally confirm to be fully compliant with applicable Belgian labour, social security and tax laws.

“We feel sorry for the workers employed by subcontractors for what has happened to them. Borealis has a zero tolerance policy regarding human rights violations, and we act accordingly. With the restart of the construction with Ponticelli, Borealis has further strengthened its standards for major expansion projects in a safe way,” comments Philippe Roodhooft, Borealis Executive Vice President. “Any contractor who does not comply with highest professional standards, be it directly or indirectly, disqualifies as a partner for us.”

“We are very grateful to Borealis for their confidence in these delicate times, which displayed our shared value to never compromise on our most important asset: our People,” comments Thierry Le Gangneux, CEO of Ponticelli. “And thanks to the reinforced connection between our Groups, we are more committed than ever to make this project a success.”

We remind, in July, Borealis suspends contract with IREM-Ponticelli and declares a three-day stand-still for its construction site in Kallo, Belgium.

Borealis is one of the world’s leading providers of advanced and sustainable polyolefin solutions and a European front-runner in polyolefins recycling. In Europe, we are a market leader in base chemicals and fertilizers. We leverage our polymer expertise and decades of experience to offer value adding, innovative and circular material solutions for key industries such as consumer products, energy, healthcare, infrastructure and mobility.

Strikes knock already struggling French refined products sector

Strikes knock already struggling French refined products sector

MOSCOW (MRC) -- More than 60% of France's refining capacity is offline as strikes over pay and unplanned maintenance pile pressure on the refined products sector, said Reuters.

The outages come as Europe looks to ease its dependence on Russian fuel. Here are the oil companies and sites affected by strike action and outages:

French unions CGT and Force Ouvriere called for a strike on Sept. 20 following wage negotiations with Exxon Mobil Corp related to rising inflation in Europe. Strike action continued for the 11th day on Sept. 30 after failed wage talks.

We have temporarily put limitations in place for customers in accordance with the terms of our supply contracts. We have a supply response team in place to supply product from unaffected sources," the spokesperson said."

Exxon began gradually closing the 240,000 barrel per day (bpd) Port Jerome-Gravenchon oil refinery on Sept. 20, a process completed on the weekend of Sept. 24.

Exxon began closing the NGD petrochemical site on Sept. 20 as a result of strike action and completed the shutdown on the weekend of Sept. 24.

Strike action spread to Exxon’s 140,000 bpd Fos-Sur-Mer refinery on Sept. 21, leading to a gradual shutdown of the plant, which was completed on the weekend of Sept. 24.

Workers at Exxon’s Toulouse depot joined the strike on Sept. 22 but Exxon said that operations at its terminals have not been impacted.

Strikes over pay disrupted TotalEnergies SE's oil products refining and delivery for a fourth day on Friday, with four of its French plants hit by continuing industrial action by workers.

A TotalEnergies spokesperson said there is no impending fuel shortage due to the strikes as the company has built up stocks and is importing regularly.

"The objective of the strike is not disruption, but to obtain a negotiation on wage measures compensating for inflation," CGT union delegate Thierry Defresne told Reuters. It is possible the strikes will continue past Friday, he added.

France's largest sugar maker Tereos on Thursday said it had to slow output slightly at some factories and TotalEnergies had said the strikes would prevent it from supplying diesel fuel until the end of the week.

TotalEnergies is temporarily halting production at its 240,000 bpd Gonfreville refinery, the company said on Wednesday. Deliveries at Gonfreville have stopped and it is still in the process of being shut down, said Defresne.

Deliveries at the 240,000 bpd Gonfreville refinery in Normandy have stopped and it is being shut down, Defresne said.

TotalEnergies and trade union CGT said that strikes were also underway at the La Mede, Feyzin and Flanders refineries.

TotalEnergies' 119,000 bpd Feyzin oil refinery in southern France was taken offline on Sept. 16 after a leak at the fluid catalytic cracking unit. The refinery is likely to remain closed for four to six weeks from that date, CGT's Defresne said.

We remind, France's refined products sector is under strain as a result of strike action over pay and unplanned maintenance which have led to more than 40% of its refining capacity being taken offline.The outages come at a time where Europe is looking to ease its dependence on Russian fuel.

China manufacturing activities edged higher in September

China manufacturing activities edged higher in September

MOSCOW (MRC) -- According to the latest data from the National Bureau of Statistics (NBS), manufacturing activities in China picked up in September, registering 50.1 points compared to 49.4 in August, said Commonplast.

The Chinese government introduces more than 50 different economic policies to stimulate growth since May, which all started coming into effect while the heatwaves have ended, allowing the manufacturing sector to come back.

However, the official non-manufacturing data which includes the service and construction sector fell 2 percentage points from the previous month to 50.6. Authorities said construction activities saw a brisk expansion, but the tepid performance in consumer service businesses such as retailing, aviation, transportation, hospitality, catering, and resident services weighed on the market.

A sub-index for new order recovered 0.6 points from the previous month but remained in the contraction territory, standing at 49.8 in September.

We remind, Johnson Matthey (JM), and Dow announced Anqing Shuguang Petrochemical Oxo Co., Ltd. (Anqing), has licensed LP Oxo Technology to produce approximately 200 kta 2-ethylhexanol and 25 kta iso-butyraldehdye. This licence, the second LP Oxo Licence for Anqing and the 23rd licence of LP Oxo? Technology served in China, will support expanding Anqing's oxo business in the growing oxo alcohols' market. The plant is expected to come online in 2024. Anqing first started operating LP Oxo? Technology in 2016 to produce 100kta 2-ethylhexanol, 115 kta nomal butanol and 23 kta iso butanol.