LyondellBasell rejects bid by Indian energy major Reliance Industries Ltd.

March 3 (plastemart) -- Bankrupt petrochemicals maker LyondellBasell has rejected a bid for takeover by India's Reliance Industries Ltd. The New York Post reported that a creditor group led by US private equity firm Apollo Management, which is controlling Lyondell's bankruptcy process in the United States, is expected to reject Reliance's latest bid. Reliance raised its offer twice, with chances for success clouded by the prospect that senior creditors may take a loss at the price Reliance has proposed and gain more from an independent Lyondell.

It seems likely that RIL will turn its attention to other acquisition opportunities.

MRC MRC Reference

LyondellBasell. The share in the Russian market in 2008:
PE - 1.4% (including HDPE - 2.5%, LDPE - 0.3%);
PP - 4.1% (including block-copolymers - 9.5%).

Annual sales growth in Russia, during the recent 5 years:
PE - 27%;
PP - 88%.

The leader in the following polymers processing technologies:

pipe extrusion;

film extrusion;

injection molding.

Polystyrene imports up 45% in Ukraine in January

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Polystyrene (PS) imports went up by 45% (to 1.57 kt) in Ukraine in January compared to the same period last year - according to MRC DataScope Report. Imports of Russian feedstock increased nearly 8 times.

HIPS imports went up by nearly three times (to 428 mt). At the same time, supplies fell by almost 3.5 times compared to last December due to weak buying activity at the beginning of the year. In January, the Ukrainian market was importing feedstock produced only by Nizhnekamskneftekhim, Polimeri Europa and Dwory.

In January, GPPS imports hiked by more than 2.5 times (to 424 mt). Ukrainian converters and traders began to import Kumho's material (the last imports of that producer's feedstock were recorded in May 2008).

EPS imports dropped by 43% (to 303 mt). In January, Ukrainian companies were not importing material produced by Dow and Nova Chemicals (in 2009, imports of feedstock of those producers moved at 2.17kt and 1.26 kt, respectively).

SAN imports fell by more than 7 times (to 21 mt), as well. At the same time, ABS and SBS supply went up by more than 4 and 8 times, respectively.


For more detailed information on the polystyrene market, see DataScope Report.

KPC expects nod to develop US$9 bln refinery and 1 mln tpa ethylene project in China

March 2 (plastemart) -- Kuwait expects to receive approval to develop a US$9 bln refinery and a 1 mln tpa ethylene project in China by the end of the year. After initial approval in 2006, the project has suffered years of delays, and still awaits approval from Beijing. State-owned KPC and Sinopec each hold a 50% stake in the joint venture, with KPC planning to hive 20% of its share to international partners. BP Plc was linked with the project in 2007, but appeared to be out of the running in 2008 when Kuwait shortlisted Royal Dutch Shell and Dow Chemical Co as potential partners for refining and petrochemicals respectively.


HDPE prices did not change in Russia in March

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Weak seasonal demand did not allow Russian producers to raise HDPE prices for March. Prices for high-density polyethylene remained at the level of February: RUB50.500-51.000/mt - according to the MRC Price Report.

In view of surplus supply, market prices for some grades even went down last week.

Kazanorgsyntez turned out to be the only company that slightly raised its prices for film- and pipe-grade polyethylene.

March prices for European HDPE for shipments to the Russian market did not change either and remained at the level of EUR1.000/mt, FCA.


For more detailed information on the Russian polyethylene market, see Price Report.

Husky reports 12% sales drop in 2009

March 2 (Canadian Plastics) -- Husky Injection Molding Systems reported a sales decline of 12% compared to sales in 2008.

The Bolton, Ont.-based company generated sales of $1.1 billion in 2009, versus 2008 sales of $1.3 billion.

The financial results were included in an annual report released by Onex, the Canadian private equity company that acquired Husky in 2007 and took the company private.

⌠While Husky significantly improved its margins in 2009, sales were lower primarily due to the global economic recession, the report said.

While the overall numbers were gloomy - in particular, a decline of 23% in North America - there were signs of brightness in the Onex report, including a 13% increase in sales of Husky equipment in Latin America in 2009.

Husky indicated there is no connection between the figures reported by Onex and the machinery maker's decision to hold a large, two-day equipment auction later this month. On March 23-24, Toronto-based industrial plant auction specialist Corporate Assets Inc. will conduct the auction in Bolton, near Husky's facility. Included in the auction will be almost 20 metal cutting units, as well as paint lines, manufacturing cells and smaller equipment.

⌠The auction is simply selling assets, most of which are at least 10 years old, that are no longer required, Husky spokesperson Alexandra Walsh told Canadian Plastics. ⌠This does not represent a shift in the way we are doing business or in our commitment to the Bolton campus. As we did last year, this year we will continue to make significant investments in new equipment and technology on the Bolton campus, which continues to be the primary mold and machine manufacturing location used to meet customer requirements in North and South America.