Changsu Industrial, TotalEnergies Corbion partner to advance biobased BOPLA films

Changsu Industrial, TotalEnergies Corbion partner to advance biobased BOPLA films

MOSCOW (MRC) -- A new strategic partnership between Chinese company Xiamen Changsu Industrial Pte Ltd (Changsu Industrial) and Netherlands-based TotalEnergies Corbion, aimed at further advancing the polylactic acid industry has been announced, said the company.

The focus of the partnership will be on biaxially oriented polylactic acid, or BOPLA. BOPLA is made with biobased PLA using biaxial stretching technology. Changsu Industrial markets its low carbon BOPLA product, currently used in packaging materials, under the BiONLY name.

Asia, especially Thailand, China and South Korea have been pushing ahead in the bioplastics space, both as regards development and production. And in China, the bioplastic industry has seen tremendous growth with new technological breakthroughs in biobased materials after the country issued its Made in China 2025. manufacturing sector development plan, explained Mou Qingying, Changsu Industrial’s vice president.

As a producer of high-performance specialty plastic films, the company focuses on three major product segments: new energy, biodegradable, and functional film materials.

The present partnership with TotalEnergies Corbion will see the market promotion, product development, and research and development of new technologies and applications of BOPLA - all of which will contribute to the worldwide green transformation and help China reach its goal of being carbon-neutral by 2060, said Mou Qingying.
The two companies are already working closely together, efforts which have resulted in the development of BOPLA-based adhesive tapes made from Changsu’s BiONLY which are projected for use by the postal service in China.

New regulations have already been announced to encourage the adoption of biodegradable materials in the country's postal service by 2025 with some cities aiming to achieve this earlier by the end of 2023. With the further tightening of the regulation, BOPLA-based adhesive tapes are expected to experience a wider adoption in the future.

“With increasing needs for sustainable solutions globally, the partnership of Changsu and TotalEnergies Corbion is paving the way for the introduction of more PLA-based innovation to the world. It's a win-win-win for people, industry, and the environment,” said Thomas Philipon, CEO TotalEnergies Corbion.

We remind, TotalEnergies and Paprec, leader in plastic recycling in France, have signed a long-term commercial agreement to develop a French value chain for advanced recycling of plastic film wastes. The agreement will secure the supply of TotalEnergies' future advanced plastic recycling plant in Grandpuits. Following the terms of this agreement, Citeo, the main organization in charge of end-of-life household packaging in France, will provide a stream of flexible plastic waste sorted from post-consumer packaging.

Iraq awaits final answer from Turkey to resume exports

Iraq awaits final answer from Turkey to resume exports

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Iraq is still waiting for a final answer from Turkey to resume its northern oil exports, which run from the semi-autonomous Kurdistan region to the Turkish port of Ceyhan, Iraq's oil minister Hayan Abdel-Ghani said on Tuesday, said Reuters.

Turkey told Baghdad a technical team was evaluating whether the pipeline was damaged as a result of the devastating February earthquake, Abdel-Ghani said. "We are about to send a technical team to evaluate this pipeline so that we are sure that it is ready or if it needs extra checks," Abdel-Ghani added.

Turkey halted Iraq's 450,000 barrels per day (bpd) of northern exports through the Iraq-Turkey pipeline on March 25 after an arbitration ruling by the International Chamber of Commerce (ICC). The ICC ordered Turkey to pay Baghdad damages of USD1.5 B for unauthorized exports by the Kurdistan Regional Government between 2014 and 2018.

Iraq asked Turkey this month to resume pipeline flows and loading operations at Ceyhan on May 13. Turkish pipeline operator BOTAS has yet to receive instruction from Turkish authorities to resume flows, an Iraqi oil official told Reuters on Monday.

"We're talking about weeks, not days, as an expected time frame to resume exports. This issue is more political now than technical," the source said. Iraqi government officials previously told Reuters they blamed elections for the delay.

Turkey held presidential elections on May 14 but neither of the two main candidates exceeded the required 50% of the votes and a run-off is scheduled for May 28.

We remind, Turkey doubled Russian Urals oil imports in the first half of May versus the same period of April, according to Refinitiv Eikon data and Reuters calculations, as the country profits from cheap crude that is sanctioned by the West. Some 193,000 barrels per day (bpd) of the Russian grade were loaded for supplies to Turkey's ports during May 1-15 compared with 96,000 bpd during the same period of April, the data shows.

Czechs take next step to eliminate Russian oil from Polish-owned refineries

Czechs take next step to eliminate Russian oil from Polish-owned refineries

MOSCOW (MRC) -- The Czech Republic can cover its oil needs through shipments via the Transalpine Pipeline (TAL) pipeline from 2025, Prime Minister Petr Fiala said on Tuesday after the country signed a deal to boost capacity along the link, said Reuters.

The Czech government is looking to eliminate all dependence on Russian oil in the coming years, and thus end its exemptions from a European Union ban on imports from Moscow last year.

Czech refineries are owned by Polish state-controlled refiner PKN Orlen, which said in April it terminated a contract for Russian oil supplies for its Polish refineries.

Polish government and PKN Orlen officials met with the Czech Industry Ministry in Prague on Tuesday and said they would work to eliminate Russian oil from PKN-owned refineries in the Czech Republic.

Speaking separately outside of Prague at an oil storage facility for strategic reserves, Czech prime minister Fiala said an agreement just signed between state-owned pipeline operator MERO and the TAL pipeline company to boost capacity along the TAL by up to 4 million tons would enable it to cut off dependence on Russia from 2025. "It is significant milestone," Fiala said.

The Czech Republic won TAL shareholder approval last year to upgrade the link, which runs from Italy to Germany and hooks up to the IKL pipeline from Germany to the Czech Republic. The central European country needs about 7-8 million tons of oil annually, which has been split roughly between shipments coming via TAL and the Druzhba pipeline from Russia.

The EU banned shipments of Russian oil from December 2022, but exempted Druzhba pipeline supplies to refineries in Germany, Poland, Czech Republic, Slovakia and Hungary. "Our common goal is to diversify crude oil deliveries as quickly as possible in order to completely eliminate Russian oil as we already did in Poland," Polish Deputy Prime Minister Jacek Sasin said alongside PKN Orlen Chief Executive Daniel Obajtek after meeting with Czech Industry Minister Jozef Sikela.

PKN said separately it was preparing to reconfigure technology at its Litvinov refinery, which is dependent on Russian crude, to take non-Russian supplies.

PKN Orlen is also open to cooperation on oil and gas supplies as well as cooperation in nuclear power with the Czech Republic, Obajtek said. He also stressed that tax issues, including windfall taxes, could hurt investments in Unipetrol assets, which include the two Czech refineries and petrol stations.

"Our investments also depend on the regulatory approach by the Czech state, we cannot invest in places where tax regulations are suffocating for our investment," Obajtek said.

We remnd, India's oil imports from Russia rose to a fresh record high in April, further reducing the share of Middle Eastern and African grades to their lowest level in at least 22 years. Refiners in India, the world's third-biggest oil importer and consumer, are on a Russian oil-buying binge after some countries shunned purchases from Moscow over its invasion of Ukraine in February last year.

Oil rises on supply outlook, Saudi speculator warning

Oil rises on supply outlook, Saudi speculator warning

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Oil rose on Tuesday supported by optimism the U.S. would avoid a debt default, a tighter market outlook and a warning from the Saudi energy minister to speculators that raised the prospect of further OPEC+ cuts to support the market, said Reuters.

The gains added to a rally on Monday, when crude gained a tailwind from a 2.8% increase in U.S. gasoline futures ahead of the Memorial Day holiday on May 29 which traditionally marks the start of the peak summer demand season.

On the U.S. debt ceiling, White House and congressional Republican negotiators will meet again on Tuesday to resolve a impasse over raising the USD31.4 trillion debt limit, with the nation facing the risk of default in as little as nine days.

Brent crude was up 89 cents, or 1.2%, at USD76.88 a barrel by 1218 GMT while U.S. West Texas Intermediate (WTI) crude gained 95 cents, or 1.3%, to USD73.00.

"The rally is the combination of tentative hopes of resolving the debt ceiling conundrum and the comments from the Saudi energy minister," said Tamas Varga of oil broker PVM.

"The market will now see an increased chance of further production cuts at the next OPEC+ meeting, whether justified or not."

Several members of the Organization of the Petroleum Exporting Countries and allies including Russia, known as OPEC+, in May began voluntary production cuts which as well as higher U.S. gasoline demand are also expected to tighten supply.

OPEC+ meets again on June 4, and Saudi Arabia's energy minister said on Tuesday he would keep short sellers - those betting that prices will fall - "ouching" and told them to "watch out".

"With the Saudi energy minister once again telling speculators to 'watch out' some (short sellers) may have second thoughts," Ole Hansen, head of commodity strategy at Saxo Bank, said in emailed comments to Reuters.

Also coming onto the radar is the latest U.S. inventory data, which analysts expect to show a small rise in crude stocks. The first of the week's two reports, from the American Petroleum Institute, is out at 2030 GMT.

We remind, oil prices dipped as traders warily watched for signs of progress on talks to raise the U.S. debt ceiling, after surging in the previous session on optimism over U.S. fuel demand. Brent crude futures slipped 76 cents, or 1%, to USD76.20 a barrel by 1333 GMT. U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude was down 66 cents, or 0.9%, at USD72.17 a barrel. A sharp plunge in U.S. gasoline inventories due to demand surging to the highest levels since 2021, and optimism surrounding negotiations over the U.S. debt ceiling, helped the main crude benchmarks settle more than USD2 higher.

Berry, Peel Plastics, ExxonMobil Collaborate to use certified-circular content in Pet food packaging

Berry, Peel Plastics, ExxonMobil Collaborate to use certified-circular content in Pet food packaging

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Berry Global Group, Inc., Peel Plastic Products Ltd., and ExxonMobil are working together to integrate International Sustainability and Carbon Certificate (ISCC) PLUS certified-circular plastics into pet food packaging for household brand names, said Packworld.

The collaboration leverages ExxonMobil’s ExxtendTM technology for advanced recycling, which processes plastic waste and attributes it to new plastic for food-grade packaging through a mass balance approach.

“With the promise of advanced recycling, we can change what is traditionally considered waste and transform it into innovative products made to be remade – accelerating the shift to a circular economy,” said Wesley Porter, Business Development Director – Sustainability and Innovation, Berry Global. “Working across the plastics value chain to increase the use of recycled and certified-circular content helps keep precious resources in use instead of becoming waste in our environment.”

Advanced recycling technology helps capture the value of plastics that currently go unrecycled, like snack wrappers, food pouches, and plastic toys. Unlike other recycling technologies, the resulting circular plastics are identical to those made from conventional feedstock and can be used in contact-sensitive, food-grade packaging solutions.

“We’re committed to building a brighter future for plastic packaging and designing circularity into our solutions plays an integral role in doing so. We’re extremely excited to be at the forefront of this innovative approach, enabling us to offer circular packaging solutions to our partners in the pet food industry,” said Mark Liberman, VP Sales and Marketing for Peel Plastics.

Berry matched Peel Plastics’ desire for sustainability benefits across its Think Green portfolio using ExxonMobil’s Exxtend technology for advanced recycling. In addition to industry-leading access to certified-circular resins, Berry’s manufacturing expertise enables it to deliver plastic films that are ready for circular resin integration.

We remind, Berry Global Group, Inc. is the first plastic packaging manufacturer in Europe to supply The Coca-Cola Company with a lightweight, tethered closure for its carbonated soft drinks in PET (polyethylene terephthalate) bottles. Bolstered by the European Union (EU) Single-Use Plastics Directive, Berry’s new tethered closure for Coca-Cola is designed to remain intact with the bottle – making it less likely to be littered and more likely to be recycled.