Wacker completes capacity expansion in China

Wacker completes capacity expansion in China

MOSCOW (MRC) -- WACKER has completed the capacity expansion measures for the produc-tion of vinyl-acetate-ethylene copolymer (VAE) dispersions and VAE dispersible polymer powders at WACKER’s Nanjing site in China, said the company.

“China is the world’s largest construction market, covering about 20 percent of global construction expenditure. Our VAE dispersions and dispersible powders enable us to supply the growing construction market in China with binders for various applications such as ceramic tile adhesives, waterproofing membranes or carpets. This capacity expansion in Nanjing strengthens our position as the global leader for vinyl-acetate-ethylene dispersions and polymer powders“, noted Christian Hartel, CEO of Wacker Chemie AG. What is more, China is already one of the world’s most important adhesive markets. “Our new plant is close to our customers, thereby supporting their growth even more effectively”, added Peter Summo, who heads the WACKER POLYMERS business division.

During the inauguration ceremony, Alvin Hu, President of WACKER China, stated that the expansion demonstrated WACKER’s strong focus on the market in China. “The capacity expansion project at the Nanjing site is a milestone for WACKER China. With the expansion, we have at the same time reserved sufficient space for subsequent production lines, allowing for the rapid construction of future expansion projects. It will not only meet increasing customer demand in China, but also provide WACKER with sufficient capacity for its long-term development in the region.”

WACKER’s Nanjing expansion corresponds to a total investment of more than US$ 100 million. The new production facilities more than double the annual capacity of VAE dispersions and VAE dispersible polymer powders on site. The VAE dispersions project is designed around an advanced dispersion-polymerization process and a safety control system that meets high standards, making the entire process cutting edge in this field. The new production line for VAE dispersible polymer powders adopts advanced spray-drying technology and features an advanced process control system (APC). The two new plants are the largest of their kind in the world. The Nanjing site is one of four production sites WACKER POLYMERS operates globally.

WACKER’s Nanjing expansion was launched at the end of 2020 and successfully completed after overcoming various challenges posed by the Corona pandemic during construction. Nearly two hundred guests attended the inauguration event, including government representatives, customers, and distributors.

We remind, WACKER chemical group headquartered in Munich, Germany, has acquired 100% of the shares of contract manufacturing company (CMO) ADL BioPharma. The shares were purchased from Kartesia, a financial investor with whom Wacker signed a corresponding agreement finalizing the transaction last week. Following Wacker's purchase of fermentation assets in the northern Spanish city of Leon in 2016, the chemical group now owns the entire site.


Nouryon signs its first power purchase agreement for an onsite solar project in the US

Nouryon signs its first power purchase agreement for an onsite solar project in the US

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Nouryon, a global specialty chemicals leader, announced today that it has signed a 30-year power purchase agreement (PPA) with Convergent Energy and Power to supply 2-megawatt (MW) of solar power to Nouryon’s manufacturing site in Morris, IL, US, said the company.

The onsite solar field is expected to be operational in the second half of 2024. “We are pleased to sign our first onsite PPA in the US as part of our commitment to reduce our greenhouse gas emissions,” said Eduardo Nardinelli, Senior Vice President, South America & Global Carbon Business Leader. “We view this agreement as another step towards increasing our renewable energy footprint."

Nouryon aims to reduce its absolute Scopes 1 and 2 greenhouse gas emissions by 40% by 2030 compared to 2019 and aspires to be a net-zero organization by 2050. More information on the Company’s sustainability progress can be found in the full report, the ESG fact sheet and dedicated Sustainability section of the Company website.

Nouryon is a global, specialty chemicals leader. Markets and consumers worldwide rely on our essential solutions to manufacture everyday products, such as personal care, cleaning goods, paints and coatings, agriculture and food, pharmaceuticals, and building products. Furthermore, the dedication of approximately 7,900 employees with a shared commitment to our customers, business growth, safety, sustainability and innovation has resulted in a consistently strong financial performance. We operate in over 80 countries around the world with a portfolio of industry-leading brands.

We remind, Nouryon announced that it has commissioned a chlorine dioxide plant to modernize and expand the Arauco pulp mill in Chile. The project, called the MAPA project, is a USD2.35 billion pulp mill and is the largest industrial project in the Biobio region. The new plant adds 1.56 million tons per year of eucalyptus pulp capacity to Arauco’s footprint that will be supplied to its customers.


Oil prices rise on concerns over tightening supply

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Oil prices gained on Wednesday after U.S. oil and fuel supplies tightened and as a warning from the Saudi energy minister to speculators raised the prospect of further OPEC+ output cuts, said Hydrocarbonprocessing.

Brent crude futures rose 86 cents, or 1.1%, to USD77.70 a barrel by 0007 GMT, while the U.S. West Texas Intermediate crude (WTI) gained 88 cents, or 1.2%, to USD73.79 a barrel. Industry data late Tuesday showed U.S. crude oil and fuel inventories fell sharply.

Crude inventories fell by about 6.8 million barrels in the week ended May 19, according to market sources citing American Petroleum Institute figures on Tuesday. Gasoline inventories dropped by about 6.4 million, while distillate inventories declined by about 1.8 million.

If data from the Energy Information Administration, due on Wednesday, confirm the API figures, U.S. gasoline inventories would have declined for the third straight week to their lowest pre-Memorial Day levels since 2014. The Memorial Day holiday, this year on May 29, traditionally marks the beginning of U.S. peak summer travel.

Meanwhile, production cuts by some OPEC+ members take effect this month. Fears of a supply squeeze mounted after Saudi Arabia's energy minister said he would keep short sellers - those betting that prices will fall - "ouching" and told them to "watch out."

Some investors took that as a signal that the Organization of Petroleum Exporting Countries and allies including Russia could consider further output cuts at a meeting on June 4.

Elsewhere, markets were still wary about U.S. debt ceiling discussions which in turn tempered oil price gains. Another round of debt ceiling talks ended on Tuesday with no signs of progress as the deadline to raise the government's USD31.4 T borrowing limit or risk default ticked closer.

We remind, 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. 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.


OxyChem to install new electrolyzers at Texas facility

MOSCOW (MRC) -- thyssenkrupp nucera is partnering with OxyChem to install the latest generation eBiTAC v7 electrolyzers to support the conversion of its Battleground plant in LaPorte, Texas, from the diaphragm to membrane chlor-alkali technology, said Hydrocarbonprocessing.

"The fact that OxyChem has contracted us for the important retrofit of its large chlor-alkali plant makes us very pleased because it demonstrates the great trust and partnership, we have built with OxyChem through our chlor-alkali technology and service," says Dr. Werner Ponikwar, CEO and Chairman of the Executive Board of thyssenkrupp nucera AG & Co. KGaA.

thyssenkrupp nucera offers world-class technologies for highly efficient electrolysis plants and supports the conversion of OxyChem's Battleground plant diaphragm cells. Production and delivery will take approximately three years, and thyssenkrupp nucera will expand its manufacturing facilities to accommodate this significant supply agreement.

In this project, thyssenkrupp nucera was involved in the early stages of project development and supplied the basic design for the core of the chlor-alkali facility. The transformation of the chlor-alkali plant into membrane technology is scheduled to begin in 2023 and is expected to be finished by 2026.

We remind, OxyChem, the chemical division of Occidental Petroleum, will shutter its chlor-alkali plant in Niagara Falls because of poor market conditions and high costs to move products out via rail, reported S&P Global with reference to the company's statement on Aug. 19. "This decision was made due to unfavorable regional market conditions as well as unreasonable and continually escalating rail transportation costs," the company said in a statement.


Dow signs supply agreement for bio-plastic materials

MOSCOW (MRC) -- U.S. chemical maker Dow Inc said on Thursday it had signed a long-term supply agreement with bio-conversion company New Energy Blue for plastic materials made from corn residue, in a bid to move towards renewable energy sources for production, said Reuters.

"This collaboration can help redefine how we source raw materials for our products, allowing us to expand to include renewable feedstocks," said Dow Global Sustainability Director Manav Lahoti.

As part of the agreement, Dow will support the designing of New Energy's upcoming facility in Iowa, that is expected to process 275 kilotons of corn stalks and leaves per year to produce ethanol. Nearly half of this ethanol will be turned into bio-based ethylene feedstock for Dow products.

Ethylene, which is generally made from naphtha, is a basic feedstock for petrochemicals that are processed into products such as plastics.

Dow aims to reduce its fossil fuel sourcing for production and subsequent greenhouse gas emissions by using bio-plastic made from agricultural residues, the company said. The agreement also gives Dow similar commercial supply options for the next four future New Energy Blue projects.

In April, Dow announced a partnership with industrial gas maker Linde Plc (LIN.DE) for clean hydrogen and nitrogen supply for a proposed net-zero carbon emissions ethylene and derivatives complex in Canada.

We remind, Dow reported a net loss of USD73m for the first quarter (Q1) on a slump in volumes and sales prices in key segments and important geographies. Net sales for the largest US chemical company were down 22% at USD11,851m reflecting, Dow said, declines in all its operating segments driven by lower macroeconomic activity.