Tronox reports Q3 2022 financial results

Tronox reports Q3 2022 financial results

Tronox reported an increase in third-quarter net income on increased sales and a tax benefit, said the company.

The following table shows the company’s financial performance. Figures are in millions of dollars. The company said revenue was up year on year driven by higher prices for titanium dioxide (TiO2), zircon and pig iron and on higher pig iron volumes.

John D Romano, co-CEO, said the results were despite a significant reduction in demand in Europe, Middle East, Africa, and Asia Pacific.

Romano said the company expects TiO2 demand to plunge by 25-30% in Q4 because of customer destocking, continued weakness in Europe, Middle East, Africa, and Asia Pacific, and seasonal weakness in North America.

“We believe customer inventory levels remain low relative to previous periods of economic weakness, so we do not believe we will see similar levels of destocking as we move into 2023," Romano said.

The company said it expects Q4 adjusted EBITDA to be USD140m-170m, assuming the decrease in TiO2 volumes and one-time cost impacts from reduced production as a result of lower customer demand. Full year adjusted EBITDA is expected to be USD902m-932m.

The company said it has implemented plans to significantly reduce its annual capital expenditures (Capex) to below USD275m in 2023 to adapt to the macroeconomic environment as it unfolds.

Tronox plans to reduce production of titanium dioxide (TiO2) in the fourth quarter amid falling demand in Europe, Middle East, Africa, and Asia Pacific.

Tronox Holdings plc is one of the world’s leading producers of high-quality titanium products, including titanium dioxide pigment, specialty-grade titanium dioxide products and high-purity titanium chemicals; and zircon. We mine titanium-bearing mineral sands and operate upgrading facilities that produce high-grade titanium feedstock materials, pig iron and other minerals.

Solvay partners to create a circular economy for soda ash production in Rosignano, Italy

Solvay partners to create a circular economy for soda ash production in Rosignano, Italy

Solvay is partnering with two companies to collect and re-use the limestone residues from its soda ash production in Rosignano, furthering the company’s commitment to continually optimize the efficiency and sustainability of its operations, said the company.

Pending further tests, the new partnerships could accelerate the decrease of limestone residues released into the sea, building upon the action plan announced in September to invest in new technical solutions at the site.

Solvay and IPSIIS, a startup established in Wallonia, Belgium specializing in the manufacture of environmentally-friendly, non-flammable, lightweight and geo-sourced insulating mineral foams, are testing the use of soda ash manufacturing residues to produce specialized construction products. Since 2018, IPSIIS has been labeled a “Solar Impulse Efficient Solution”.

Solvay is also working with the Italian subsidiary of Germany-based Ferro Duo, which specializes in recycling industrial materials, to use the inert solids from soda ash manufacturing as components of fertilizers to enrich soils where precious elements like calcium, sulfur, potassium, magnesium and iron are found.

“We are excited to work with IPSIIS and Ferro Duo to develop the capabilities to create a circular economy for our soda ash production in Rosignano,” said Philippe Kehren, president of Solvay’s Soda Ash & Derivatives division. “This is the latest example of how we are constantly looking for innovative ways to improve the sustainability of our operations, a key component of our Solvay One Planet Roadmap."

“The IPSIIS process enables the recycling of secondary products to produce lower carbon footprint materials. Partnering with Solvay in this circular economy program is key for IPSIIS’s development and fits totally with our company vision and daily commitment,” said Gilles Bocabarteille, IPSIIS Board Member and Managing Director.

"With more than 20 years of experience in the business of materials recycling and waste reprocessing, Ferro Duo is excited to be working with Solvay on this ambitious sustainability project and propose a new value-creating application for limestone residues from the Rosignano plant. Together we will develop new products and new market opportunities to recycle industrial residues and create value and employment,” said Pietro Squilla, Managing Director of Ferro Duo.

Solvay ’s Rosignano facility has been manufacturing soda ash and sodium bicarbonate since 1912. These products are made from natural limestone and salt. They serve essential applications, such as the production of glass and air-pollution control systems, as well as applications in the healthcare industry, such as hemodialysis.

We remind, Solvay announced it is increasing its Amodel® polyphthalamide (PPA) resin capacity by 15% at its Augusta manufacturing site in Georgia as a result of operational excellence initiatives. The new capacity facilitates the production of innovative and more sustainable Amodel® PPA grades that offer a reduced CO2 footprint due to manufacturing improvements.

Yansab records losses during Q3 2022

Yansab records losses during Q3 2022

Yanbu National Petrochemical Co. (Yansab) reported a net profit after Zakat and tax of SAR 510.6 million in the first nine months of 2022, a 57% decrease from SAR 1.196 billion in the year-ago period, said Argaam.

The profit decline was attributed to higher production inputs average cost and lower average preliminary selling prices for all of the products resulting from changes in the market price and higher shipment cost, despite higher production and sales.

In Q3 2022, the company turned to a net loss after Zakat and tax of SAR 61 million, against a profit of SAR 179.78 million in the year before.

On a sequential basis, the company’s net profit fell from SAR 288.5 million in Q2 2022.

Shareholders’ equity, after minority interest, fell to SAR 14.207 billion as of Sept. 30, 2022, from SAR 14.652 billion in the year-earlier period.

We remind, Yanbu National Petrochemical Co (Yansab)’s net profit fell by 51.6% year on year in the second quarter on the back of higher costs. Q2 net profit was weighed by higher production costs despite higher sales volumes, it said in a filing to the Saudi bourse, Tadawul. Q2 gross profit was down by 48.23% year on year at SR399.7m.

Saudi Aramco announces USD1.5bn sustainability fund

Saudi Aramco announces USD1.5bn sustainability fund

Aramco announced the creation of a USD1.5 billion Sustainability Fund to invest in technology that can support a stable and inclusive energy transition, said the company.

It was unveiled at the sixth edition of the Future Investment Initiative (FII) and is among the largest sustainability-focused venture capital funds globally.

Managed by Aramco Ventures, the venture capital arm of Aramco, the fund is an extension of the Company’s efforts to meet the world’s growing energy demand, with lower greenhouse gas emissions.

The fund plans to invest in technologies that support the Company’s announced net-zero 2050 ambition in its wholly-owned operational assets, as well as development of new lower-carbon fuels. Initial focus areas will include carbon capture and storage, greenhouse gas emissions, energy efficiency, nature-based climate solutions, digital sustainability, hydrogen, ammonia and synthetic fuels. The fund will target investments globally.

In addition, Aramco’s wholly-owned subsidiary Aramco Trading Company has participated in the first voluntary carbon credits auction organized by the Public Investment Fund (PIF). It follows the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between Aramco and PIF earlier this year, to participate in a regional voluntary carbon market to be launched in Saudi Arabia in 2023.

Aramco Chairman, H.E. Yasir O. Al-Rumayyan, said: “Climate change is a critical issue, which is why sustainability is well-integrated in Aramco’s strategy and investment decisions. The Company is harnessing innovation and collaboration as it seeks long-term solutions to global energy challenges. By driving large-scale investments and building key domestic, regional and international partnerships, Aramco aims to enable a stable and inclusive energy transition that meets the world’s need for energy with lower emissions.”

As per MRC, Saudi Aramco has told at least three customers in North Asia they will receive full contract volumes of crude oil in November.

We remind, Saudi Arabian Oil Company (“Aramco”) inaugurated the Aramco Research Center at KAUST (ARC KAUST), which aims to accelerate the development of low-carbon solutions for the energy industry using advanced analytics. Strategically located within the King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST), the newly established research hub deploys artificial intelligence and machine learning to develop innovative ways to advance low-carbon solutions and enable a Circular Carbon Economy.

Hyundai JV finalizes construction of heavy-feed petrochemical complex in South Korea

Hyundai JV finalizes construction of heavy-feed petrochemical complex in South Korea

Seoul Hyundai Chemical, a joint venture of Hyundai Oilbank and Lotte Chemical, has completed construction on a new heavy-feed petrochemical complex (HPC) at Hyundai Oilbank's Daesan complex in South Korea, reported Yonhap News Agency citing South Korea's industry ministry, as per Apic-online.

PCN earlier reported that the project would cost around $2.5-billion and include the production of 750,000 t/y of polyethylene and 400,000 t/y of propylene (PCN, 4 Feb 2019, p 4). Operations had been expected to begin at the end of 2021.

According to the industry ministry, the new complex will have the capacity to produce 850,000 t/y of ethylene and 500,000 t/y of polypropylene.

This HPC project has heightened the competitiveness of the domestic petrochemical industry, said the report quoting Second Vice Industry Minister Park-Il June.

The government will ease regulations to help companies better achieve goals through new projects and investment.

We remind, Axens and Hyundai Chemical Co. successfully achieve the start-up of the pyrolysis gasoline (Pygas) unit, part of the Hyundai Chemical petrochemical grassroots complex in Daesan, South Korea. The product has been on-specification regarding the aromatics recovery and the sulfur content in a short period. Thanks to the strong support of Axens personnel on-site during the commissioning and start-up activities, Axens and Hyundai Chemical, started-up the Pygas units (Pygas first and second stage) in December 2021, few months after entering into a collaboration.