HPCL net profit jumps over 3 times to Rup 529 crore

HPCL net profit jumps over 3 times to Rup 529 crore
MRC -- HPCL, the state-owned oil marketing company (OMC), said on Thursday its standalone net profit increased more than three times to Rs 529 crore in the third quarter of Financial Year 2023-24 (Q3 FY24), up from Rs 172.4 crore in the same period in FY23, said Business-standard.

On a sequential basis, net profit fell 89 per cent from Rs. 5,118.1 crore registered in Q2 FY24. The sharp deterioration was due to suppressed marketing margins at select transport fuels and lower refining margins attributable to lower cracks. A crack, or crack spread, is a term used in the energy markets to represent the differences between a barrel of crude oil and the prices of wholesale petroleum products.

HPCL blamed the decline in Q2 FY24 to falling crude prices as well. Brent crude prices hit a high of Rs 94.3 per barrel on September 27, but expectations of lower industrial demand in China and inflationary fears in Europe have driven down demand. Prices stood at Rs 79.93 Thursday evening.

HPCL's income from sale of products increased 1.9 per cent to Rs 1.17 trillion in Q3 FY24 compared to the year-ago quarter. The small improvement was attributed to lower average gross refining margins (GRM) in the latest quarter. GRM is the amount that refiners earn from turning every barrel of crude oil into refined fuel products. HPCL said GRMs fell to $8.49 per barrel in Q3 FY24, down from $9.14 per barrel in Q1 FY23.

We remind, Chevron Lummus Global LLC announced the award of a new licensing contract by Hindustan Petroleum Corporation Limited for the development of a grassroots integrated hydrocracker and catalytic dewaxing unit and a full catalyst reload of their existing lube oil upgrading program at the Mumbai Refinery in India.


Borouge 4 construction surpasses 50% completion milestone

Borouge 4 construction surpasses 50% completion milestone

MRC -- Borouge, a leading petrochemical company that provides innovative and differentiated polyolefin solutions, today announced that the Borouge 4 project, one of the largest industrial projects underway in the UAE, is over 50% complete, said Hydrjcarbonprocessing.

During a recent visit to the site by H.E Dr. Sultan Al Jaber, Minister of Industry and Advanced Technology, ADNOC Managing Director and Group CEO, and Chairman of Borouge, he witnessed the strong construction progress including the installation of the world’s largest, first-ever UAE built Borstar® gas phase reactor.

The project, being built by Borouge on behalf of the project’s owners, ADNOC and Borealis, will boost Borouge’s production capacity by nearly a third. It will also enhance the company’s production facilities at Al Ruwais Industrial City, making it the world’s largest single-site polyolefin complex.

By increasing Borouge’s production capacity by 1.4 million tons a year to a total of 6.4 million tons, the plant will enable Borouge to rapidly increase global sales of its innovative and differentiated polyolefins solutions. The company supplies vital materials for critical sectors such as energy, infrastructure, and agriculture, and its solutions are increasingly deployed in major renewable energy projects.

The project continues to progress as scheduled and remains on track to be completed by the end of 2025. Upon completion, the project will be transferred to Borouge from its majority shareholders, ADNOC and Borealis.

Hazeem Sultan Al Suwaidi, Chief Executive Officer of Borouge Plc, commented: “This project is of significant importance to both Borouge and the development of the UAE’s industrial sector. The project, which is over halfway completed, will not only boost our production capacity, and mark our facilities at Al Ruwais Industrial City in Al Dhannah as the largest single-site polyolefin complex but also enhance our ability to deliver product innovation and value to customers across the high-growth markets we serve. As one of the UAE’s largest industrial projects, it is already delivering significant economic impact, with considerable orders placed with UAE manufacturers and a strong target ICV score. As Borouge plays its part in driving ‘Make it in the Emirates’, the project has emerged as a pivotal catalyst for the UAE’s industrial growth, while also supporting the nation’s initiatives towards decarbonization and energy efficiency.”

Sultan Zaid Al Shehhi, Borouge 4 Project Director, added: “A project of this scale speaks to the strength of the UAE’s industrial sector and Borouge’s ability to collaborate with partners across the value chain. We have worked closely with manufacturers and suppliers, both large and small, from across the UAE, to boost ICV and fast-track the delivery of this strategic growth project. The project, which will require over 100 million manhours to deliver, remains on track to be completed by the end of 2025 – a testament to Borouge’s excellence in execution capabilities. Moreover, with over 20,000 people on site at peak time, we have maintained our resolute focus on health and safety without compromising on quality of execution and speed of delivery thanks to the collective efforts of the Borouge project team and its contractors.”

Spanning an area of over 3.4 million square meters – equivalent to 500 football pitches – with over 7,500 kilometers of cables to be laid, 340,000 cubic meters of concrete and 77,500 tons of structural steel to be used, the project has made strong progress since its groundbreaking in early 2022. The electrical cables powering the plant, and the high-density polyethylene (HDPE) piping used are directly sourced and manufactured from Borouge’s polyethylene material, which is entirely produced in the UAE.

As one of the world’s biggest ongoing industrial construction projects, Borouge 4 is stimulating the UAE’s manufacturing sector. It serves as a significant contributor to the UAE’s In-Country Value (ICV) program, targeting an ICV score of 63%. The project has already delivered substantial economic benefits by awarding purchase orders totaling over $600 million to companies within the country.

The plant is driving job creation with over 20,000 people on site and over 100 million manhours projected to be undertaken to complete construction work. UAE national professionals, who make up 46% of Borouge project’s employees, are playing a crucial role in delivering this multi-billion-dollar strategic growth project.

In the past week, the project achieved a significant milestone by completing the on-site installation of the world’s largest Borealis Borstar® gas phase reactor. Weighing over 500 tons each, these represent the first-ever UAE-built reactors of their kind, underscoring the country’s industrial development and capabilities, showcasing the superior technology being used throughout the project, and contributing to the ICV that the project has been able to deliver.

We remind, Borouge Plc launched five new grades to meet the growing demand in the infrastructure and advanced packaging industries in the Middle East, Africa and Asia. The launch supports Borouge’s growth and innovation strategy by increasing its market share in the piping market in the company’s core territories, valued at nearly USD1 billion. Catering to the needs of consumers, Borouge unveiled its first-ever Bulk Continuous Filament (BCF) product, designed for fiber and carpet applications, to target a market worth USD100 million in the Middle East and North Africa region and providing strong opportunity for Borouge to grow its market share.


Russia's Novak says NORSI refinery repairs to take at least a month

Russia's Novak says NORSI refinery repairs to take at least a month

MRC -- Russian Deputy Prime Minister Alexander Novak said on Saturday that repair work on Lukoil's NORSI oil refinery will take at least a month or a month and a half, as per Hydrocarbonprocessing.

Lukoil said earlier this month that it had halted a unit at Russia's fourth largest refinery, located near the city of Nizhny Novgorod, some 430 km (270 miles) east of Moscow, after an "incident", without elaborating.

The outage sparked concerns about potential gasoline shortages across the country and there have been media reports suggesting that the government was considering imposing an export ban on the fuel, as it did last autumn.

"The company is assessing technical solutions for restoration, assessing the possibility of quickly restoring equipment; this will determine how long it will take. That's at least around 1-1.5 months," Novak was quoted as saying by TASS.

Industry sources have said one of two catalytic crackers remains out of action at the plant, suggesting that repair work could last until the end of March.

They have said there were two incidents affecting the plant's gasoline-producing units in early January. The plant can usually process about 17 million metric tons of oil per year (340,000 barrels per day).

Russian oil and oil refining industry has suffered several incidents this month, including fires, leading to a reduction in refining and export capacity and adding to uncertainty on the global oil market, already rocked by the attacks on shipping in the Red Sea.

We remind, Russia will likely cut exports of naphtha by some 127,500 - 136,000 bpd, or around a third of its total exports, after fires disrupted operations at refineries on the Baltic and Black Seas, according to traders and LSEG ship-tracking data. Asia's naphtha markets surged about 19% this week against the backdrop of supply disruption fears from Russia. There are jitters in the market because Russia is a key exporter of naphtha to Asia, and this kind of short-term disruption could cause prompt tightness, a naphtha trader said.


BASF and Envision Energy enter a collaboration to drive sustainable energy solutions

BASF and Envision Energy enter a collaboration to drive sustainable energy solutions

MRC -- BASF process catalysts, a leading provider of innovative catalyst technology, today announced a new collaboration with Envision Energy, a leading green technology provider of comprehensive net zero solutions, said Hydrocarbonprocessing.

The collaboration aims to further develop the conversion of green hydrogen and CO2 into e-methanol through an advanced, dynamic process design.

Backed by their respective expertise, the two companies aim to optimize the process of producing e-methanol from green hydrogen and CO2, paving the way for a more sustainable energy landscape. This collaboration will see BASF provide its cutting-edge SYNSPIRETM catalyst technology, which Envision Energy will integrate with its innovative energy management system. The two organizations plan to demonstrate the viability of the advanced process design next year, at Envision Energy’s Chifeng site in Inner Mongolia, China.

The new catalyst developed by BASF represents a significant breakthrough in sustainable energy solutions. It enables the efficient conversion of green hydrogen and CO2 into e-methanol. Methanol (or e-methanol when produced with renewable energy) is one of the most versatile and clean-burning fuels. E-methanol offers immense potential to replace fossil fuels and their derivatives gasoline and kerosene by providing an alternative source of energy for road, shipping and air transport, as well as other industries. Not only can e-methanol be used without a change in infrastructure, but its inherent stability also allows it to be stored at room temperature and ambient pressure, giving it an indefinite shelf life, thereby to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and promote a more sustainable energy ecosystem.

Envision Energy will design a process package that maximizes the efficiency of the catalyst technology while fully enabling the dynamic conversion of green hydrogen and CO2 into e-methanol, in sync with the onstream time of wind power. Envision Energy will leverage its pioneering AIoT (Artificial Intelligence of Things) platforms to optimize the novel, dynamic mode of chemical plant operation.

Detlef Ruff, Senior Vice President, process catalysts at BASF, said: “BASF process catalysts looks forward to working with Envision Energy in our shared mission to drive sustainable energy solutions. By combining our innovative catalyst technology with Envision Energy’s deep expertise, we are confident we can unlock the full potential of green hydrogen and CO2 conversion to e-methanol.”

Frank Yu, Vice President of Envision Energy added: “Driving and delivering sustainable energy solutions can only be achieved through organizations coming together. This collaboration demonstrates our commitment to bringing innovative advances to the sustainable energy value chain, to create sustainable energy solutions that are economically viable and environmentally friendly. For Envision Energy, it is all about optimizing our clients and partners’ environmental sustainability, as we work towards becoming the leading provider of green hydrogen and its derivatives.”

This collaboration exemplifies the spirit of partnership and innovation that is necessary to address the challenges of the global energy transition. By leveraging their respective strengths, BASF and Envision Energy aim to accelerate the adoption of renewable energy sources and contribute to a greener and more sustainable future.

We remind, BASF and Inditex make a breakthrough in textile-to-textile recycling with loopamid, said the company.
BASF and Inditex jointly announce a breakthrough in their efforts for boosting recyclability in the textile industry. With the launch of loopamid.


Olin announces 4Q 2023

Olin announces 4Q 2023

MRC -- Olin Corporation announced financial results for 4Q ended 31 Dec 2023. Epoxy sales for 4Q 2023 were USD313.1 M, compared to USD484.2 M in 4Q 2022, said the company.

The decrease in Epoxy sales was primarily due to lower product pricing and USD94.0 M of lower cumene and bisphenol A sales. 4Q 2023 segment loss was (USD23.1) M, compared to segment earnings of USD30.5 M in 4Q 2022.

The USD53.6 M decrease in Epoxy segment earnings was primarily due to lower pricing and incremental costs associated with inventory reduction, partially offset by lower raw material and operating costs, mainly decreased natural gas and electrical power costs, and an improved product mix.

Epoxy 4Q 2023 results included depreciation and amortization expense of USD13.0 M compared to USD22.4 M in 4Q 2022.

We remind, Olin shares rose more than 3% in afterhours trading on Thursday after its Q4 adjusted earnings beat its earlier guidance. Olin reported $210.1 million in adjusted earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA). Earlier, it expected Q4 adjusted EBITDA to be in the $200 million range. Olin expects Q1 adjusted EBITDA to rise 10% over Q4 levels, reaching $231 million.