NOVA Chemicals appoints Roger Kearns as President and CEO

NOVA Chemicals appoints Roger Kearns as President and CEO

MOSCOW (MRC) -- NOVA Chemicals Corporation announced the appointment of Mr. Roger Kearns as President and Chief Executive Officer, effective June 12, 2023, said the company.

Mr. Kearns most recently served as the Chief Operating Officer of Westlake Corporation, the global diversified manufacturer of essential products (NYSE: WLK) with 15,000 employees, which recorded net sales of USD USD15.8bn and annual net income of USD2.2bn in 2022.

Mr. Kearns succeeds Mr. Danny Dweik, who has served as interim President and CEO of NOVA Chemicals since October 2022. Mr. Dweik will remain a member of NOVA’s Board of Directors and return to his role as Head of Industrials and Business Services at Mubadala Investment Company (Mubadala), the USD284bn Abu Dhabi-based investor.

Mr. Kearns is a senior executive with extensive international leadership experience in both the commodity and specialty chemicals environments. During his tenure at Westlake, he formerly served as Executive Vice President, Performance and Essential Materials, driving large-scale revenue growth and leading the acquisition of Hexion’s global epoxy business.

Mr. Ahmed Yahia Al Idrissi, Chairman of NOVA Chemicals, said: “Roger has impeccable industry knowledge, operational depth and a proven track record in driving performance improvements, combined with the ability to mobilize and lead large organizations. We are confident he will deliver NOVA’s 2030 vision of becoming North America’s leading sustainable polyethylene producer.”

We remind, OVA Chemicals Corporation announced that it has signed a long-term Virtual Power Purchase Agreement (“VPPA”) with Shell Energy North America (Canada), Inc. to purchase 20 MW of renewable power and associated emissions offsets beginning in spring 2023. The power will be produced by BluEarth Renewables Inc. (“BluEarth”) at its Hand Hills Wind Project near Drumheller, Alberta upon the project’s commercial operation.

Songwon appoints Omya to represent its PVC stabilizers in Australia and New Zealand

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Songwon appoints Omya to represent their PVC stabilizers SONGSTAB in Australia & New Zealand, said the company.

This is an expansion of the strategic partnership of Omya with Songwon and also with their other business units, said the company.

Omya shares that they are very proud to work with Songwon in Australia & New Zealand and look forward to additional developments in the future. Specially designed plastic stabilizers protect the polymer during processing and ensure that plastic end products retain their physical properties during use, prolonging their life.

We remind, Songwon Industrial Co., Ltd., announces that it has entered an exclusive partnership for Latin America with Omya. As part of the agreement, effective January 2022, Omya will provide marketing and sales, customer service as well as distribution and logistics for SONGWON’s complete range of polyvinyl chlorie (PVC) additives to customers across the Latin American region.

Celanese to supply EVA-based drug delivery platform to Glaukos

Celanese to supply EVA-based drug delivery platform to Glaukos

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Celanese Corporation announced that it has entered into an agreement with Glaukos Corporation to supply its VitalDose Drug Delivery Platform for use as a component in Glaukos’ iDose TR, a micro-invasive intraocular implant designed to lower intraocular pressure in patients with primary open-angle glaucoma or ocular hypertension, said the company.

iDose TR is designed to address patient non-adherence and chronic side effects associated with topical medications by providing 24/7, long-duration therapy. Glaukos submitted a New Drug Application to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration for iDose TR in February 2023, which has not yet been approved.

Sustained delivery of therapeutics has become an increasingly important approach to treating glaucoma. With the VitalDose® Drug Delivery Platform, there is now the potential to provide continuous dosing which can reduce patient compliance and adherence issues.

“The inclusion of our VitalDose® Platform in Glaukos’ iDose TR therapy furthers our mission to improve patient health in ophthalmology for those living with chronic eye diseases,” says Cyonna Holmes, global business strategy leader for ophthalmology at Celanese. “Our team is excited to support Glaukos as they continue to advance their efforts to bring iDose TR to patients who may need a new glaucoma treatment alternative."

We remind, Celanese Corporation, a global chemical and specialty materials company, announced today two joint venture (JV) actions with Mitsui & Co., Ltd. to extend their longstanding strategic partnership, said the company.
Celanese announced the signing of a term sheet to form a Food Ingredients JV with Mitsui, subject to customary approvals.

Celanese Corporation is a global chemical leader in the production of differentiated chemistry solutions and specialty materials used in most major industries and consumer applications.

Singapore imports of Russian naphtha surge as EU ban shifts flows

Singapore imports of Russian naphtha surge as EU ban shifts flows

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Singapore's imports of Russian naphtha nearly tripled in the first quarter of 2023, government data showed, after the European Union banned oil products imports from Russia, said Reuters.

The Asia oil hub imported 741,000 tons of Russian naphtha in the period, accounting for about 23% of Singapore's total imports of the refined product, a Reuters calculation based on Enterprise Singapore data showed. This jumped from about 261,000 tons imported in the fourth quarter last year, the data showed.

The EU banned imports of Russian oil products from Feb. 5 and the Group of Seven Nations, EU and Australia imposed a USD45 cap on Russian naphtha trade using western ships and insurance. The limitations, which have changed global oil trade flows, are aimed at curbing Moscow's revenues, while allowing Russian supplies to stay in the market and keep world oil prices low.

Singapore's total exports of naphtha, which can be used in gasoline blending and is also a key ingredient in products such as plastics and paints, have risen to 946,000 tons in the first quarter this year, up 26% from the fourth-quarter 2022. The key buyers of naphtha from Singapore are South Korea, China, Taiwan and Japan, the data showed.

Singapore is not a participant of the EU ban but an official said in February that companies in the country will have to consider and manage any potential impact on their business activities, transactions and customer relationships when dealing with Russian crude oil and refined products.

Russia, on the other hand, has managed to find alternative buyers for its naphtha, with shipments to Brazil, Tunisia and commercial hubs in the Middle East swelling to record levels in 2022, a shift that traders and analysts expect to continue.

We remind, Russia's diesel and gasoil shipments to Brazil, Turkey and Africa were heading to new record highs in March as traders pushed into new markets following an EU ban on Russian oil products, according to traders and Refinitiv data.

Indonesia must jump ethanol feedstock hurdle to repeat biodiesel success

Indonesia must jump ethanol feedstock hurdle to repeat biodiesel success

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Indonesia, the world's biggest palm oil biodiesel user, is now working to introduce bioethanol mandates for gasoline to further cut fuel imports and carbon emissions, but it will first have to secure more bio feedstock and solve thorny technical problems, said Hydrocarbonprocessing.

Indonesia imported about 60% of the gasoline it burned last year at a cost of USD17 B, and it aims to replicate the success it had with biodiesel mandates that cut billions of dollars from diesel import bills. While much of Indonesia's emissions reductions will come from forest management and shutting coal-fired power plants, it also expects significant cuts from burning edible oil and hydrogen fuels and greater use of electric vehicles.

This year the government plans to test gasoline with 5% bioethanol in Surabaya, capital of East Java province, energy ministry official Dadan Kusdiana told Reuters. Indonesia plans eventually to mandate bioethanol content for gasoline at 15% and use it nationwide by 2031, an aggressive target when it has only two bioethanol plants that struggle to secure enough sugar molasses feedstock.

With limited bioethanol capacity and the country relying on imported sugar to meet domestic demand, including for food, some companies are looking to produce bioethanol from other feedstocks such as cassava and biomass, possibly from palm oil kernel waste and palm trunk sap.

"There are two companies interested in producing bioethanol from biomass ... So (the program) would not have to fully rely on sugarcane production," Dadan said. State energy company Pertamina also plans to build a facility to produce bioethanol from cassava and mix gasoline with 5% bioethanol and 15% methanol for a blend it calls A20, its chief executive told a parliamentary hearing in January. Pertamina has not said if the methanol would also have a bio source.

We remind, in February, Indonesia raised its mandatory biodiesel mix to 35% palm oil-based content from 30% in 2020. Its eight-year program has cut diesel imports, helped turned a current account deficit to surplus and mopped up excess output resulting from the increasing difficulty in shipping palm oil to Europe.