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Business News June 2018

By Chemical Engineering |

Plant Watch

Total and Sonatrach begin engineering studies for joint petrochemicals project

May 11, 2018 — Total S.A. (Paris, France; www.total.com) and Sonatrach (Algiers, Algeria; www.sonatrach.com) will launch engineering studies for a petrochemical project in Arzew, Algeria. The project includes a propane dehydrogenation unit and a polypropylene production unit with a capacity of 550,000 metric tons per year (m.t./yr). The project represents an investment of around $1.4 billion by the two partners, who are planning to start front-end engineering and design (FEED) this summer.

 

Eastman plans copolyester capacity expansion

May 10, 2018 — Eastman Chemical Co. (Kingsport, Tenn.; www.eastman.com) intends to expand production capacity for copolyester products at its Kingsport, Tenn. manufacturing site. The expansion is expected to be complete in the third quarter of 2018 and will increase polyethylene terephthalate glycol (PETG) and polycyclohexylenedimethylene terephthalate glycol (PCTG) capacities by approximately 25%.

 

Showa Denko completes NPAC capacity expansion

May 8, 2018 — Showa Denko (SDK; Tokyo; www.sdk.co.jp) has completed a production expansion for n-propyl acetate (NPAC) at its Oita Complex. In 2016, SDK increased the production capacity of the NPAC plant to 16,000 m.t./yr and now has further expanded the capacity of the plant to 18,200 m.t./yr of NPAC.

 

Invista to provide fourth PTA process technology license for Hengli

May 3, 2018 — Invista (Wichita, Kan.; www.invista.com) and Hengli Petrochemical Co. have reached an agreement to license Invista’s latest purified terephthalic acid (PTA) process technology for Hengli’s fourth PTA line. The fourth PTA line will have a design capacity of 2.5 million m.t./yr, and will be installed at Changxing Island, Liaoning Province, China.

 

Celanese adds new production line in Nanjing for ultra-high molecular weight PE

May 2, 2018 — Celanese Corp. (Dallas, Tex.; www.celanese.com) announced the addition of a new ultra-high molecular weight polyethylene (UHMW-PE) production line at its Nanjing, China manufacturing facility. The new line is expected to add around 15,000 m.t./yr of UHMW-PE product capacity by 2019.

 

Arkema starts up expanded PVDF unit in Kentucky

April 26, 2018 — Arkema (Colombes, France; www.arkema.com) successfully brought on stream new Kynar PVDF (polyvinylidene difluoride) capacity at its Calvert City, Kentucky plant. The expansion represents a 20% increase in Arkema’s U.S. production capacity.

 

Jacobs wins services contract for Encina’s BTX plant in Wyoming

April 26, 2018 — Jacobs Engineering Group Inc. (Dallas, Tex.; www.jacobs.com) received a contract from Encina Chemicals, LLC (Coral Gables, Fla.; www.encina.com) to provide operations readiness support services for Encina’s new benzene-toluene-xylenes (BTX) processing plant in Gillette, Wyoming. When commissioned in the summer of 2020, this plant will feature a scalable design to produce 50,000 to 100,000 m.t./yr of BTX.

 

Wacker opens new production site for silicones in South Korea

April 25, 2018 — Wacker Chemie AG (Munich, Germany; www.wacker.com) opened a new production site for silicone elastomers in Jincheon, South Korea. Wacker already has an established production base in Jincheon, where the group has been producing silicone sealants and specialty silicones since 2010. Around €15 million has been invested in the new 13,000-m 2 production site.

 

Air Liquide doubles its global biomethane production capacity

April 20, 2018 — Air Liquide (Paris, France; www.airliquide.com) has commissioned three new biomethane production units in Walnut, Miss., Cestas, France and Northwick, U.K. With these units, Air Liquide has doubled its biomethane production capacity. Air Liquide has invested around €100 million in biomethane production in recent years.

 

Toray to establish resin production plant in India

April 18, 2018 — Toray Industries, Inc. (Tokyo, Japan; www.toray.com) plans to establish a production facility for nylon and polybutylene terephthalate (PBT) resin compounds at its Indian subsidiary, TID. The facility, which will have a production capacity of 5,000 m.t./yr, will be set up at TID’s base in Sri City in Andhra Pradesh State, and the company is aiming to start operations in September 2019.

 

Mergers & Acquisitions

ExxonMobil agrees to sell petroleumrefinery in Sicily to Sonatrach

May 10, 2018 — Sonatrach signed an agreement with ESSO Italiana, a subsidiary of Exxon Mobil Corp. (Irving, Tex.; www.exxonmobil.com) for the purchase of ExxonMobil’s refinery located in Augusta, Sicily, Italy, as well as three oil terminals located in Italy and their associated pipeline systems. The transfer of the refinery and its assets to Sonatrach will take place at the end of 2018.

 

BASF and Solenis to merge paper and water chemicals businesses

May 3, 2018 — Solenis (Wilmington, Del.; www.solenis.com) and BASF SE (Ludwigshafen, Germany; www.basf.com) signed an agreement to combine BASF’s paper and water chemicals business with Solenis to jointly create a global specialty chemicals company. The combined company intends to operate under the Solenis brand and will provide expanded offerings for paper and industrial water technologies. The transaction is expected to close around the end of 2018.

 

Marathon Petroleum to purchase Andeavor for $35.6 billion

May 2, 2018 — Marathon Petroleum Corp. (MPC; Findley, Ohio; www.marathonpetroleum.com) and Andeavor (San Antonio, Tex.; www.andeavor.com) have entered into a definitive merger agreement under which MPC will acquire all of Andeavor’s outstanding shares, representing a total enterprise value of $35.6 billion. With a capacity of over 3 million bbl/d, the combined company will be the largest refiner in the U.S.

 

ExxonMobil to acquire lubricant manufacturer in Indonesia

May 1, 2018 — ExxonMobil agreed to purchase PT Federal Karyatama (FKT), one of Indonesia’s largest manufacturers of lubricants. The acquisition includes the Federal Oil brand and a 700,000-bbl/d blending plant in Cilegon, Indonesia. ExxonMobil expects the transaction to close in the third quarter of 2018.

 

CarbonCure and Airgas to collaborate on CO 2 utilization

May 1, 2018 — CarbonCure Technologies Inc. (Halifax, N.S., Canada; www.carboncure.com) will collaborate with Airgas (Radnor, Pa.; www.airgas.com) to enhance the adoption of CO 2 -utilization technologies in the cement and concrete industries throughout the U.S. Gulf Coast region. CarbonCure’s technology injects CO 2 sourced from industrial sites into concrete, where the CO 2 becomes mineralized.

 

Italmatch acquires metalworking fluids business from Afton

April 27, 2018 — Italmatch Chemicals Group (Genova, Italy; www.italmatch.com) agreed to acquire the metalworking fluid business (formally known as Polartech) from Afton Chemical (Richmond, Va.; www.aftonchemical.com). The deal includes sites in Bedford Park, Ill. and Manchester, U.K., as well as technology, production and business activities in Hyderabad, India and China.

 

AkzoNobel and Ineos to collaborate on chelates production

April 20, 2018 — AkzoNobel Specialty Chemicals (Amsterdam, the Netherlands; www.akzonobel.com) and Ineos (Rolle, Switzerland; www.ineos.com) have signed a cooperation agreement that will allow AkzoNobel to expand its production of biodegradable chelates, utilizing one of Ineos Nitriles’ chemical products. With this partnership, AkzoNobel will expand its chelates production in Europe with the construction of new production facilities in Cologne, Germany, which Ineos will operate. These new facilities are slated for completion in 2020.

 

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