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Key pointers from this month’s issue

Central Europe

  1. Central European petrochemical producer results were affected by higher crude prices in the first half of 2018, although PKN Orlen and MOL still both reported rises in net profits over the first half of 2017.  Orlen achieved a 20% rise in net profit in the second quarter to zl 1.74 billion, although overall for the first half of 2018 the net profit declined to zl 2.78 billion down from zl 3.46 billion in the same period in 2017. 

  2. Both Orlen and MOL are focused on the strategic development of petrochemicals over the next decade in place of fuels and energy products.  In the short to medium term, Orlen is close to completion of Unipetrol’s PE3 project at Litvinov in the Czech Republic whilst MOL is working on polyol projects and the development of propylene derivatives in Hungary. 

Russia & other markets

  1. Overall for the first half of 2018 production in the Russian chemical industry increased 4% against the same period in 2018.  Russian ethylene production rose slightly in the first half of 2018 to 1.522 million tons against 1.517 million tons in the same period in 2017, whilst propylene made much larger gains rising by 81,000 tons to 1.133 million tons.  Increases were recorded across the board for bulk polymers.  For the first six months, the production of bulk plastics increased by 5.1% compared to last year's figure and amounted to 4.1 million tons.

  2. Russia’s trade deficit in chemical products fell in the first half of 2018 to $10.2 billion from $10.9 billion in the same period in 2017.  The reduced deficit can be attributed to a number of factors such as increased domestic production in certain product areas and slow-moving activity in some sectors of chemical applications.  In polymers and rubber, Russia expects to increase export trade over the next few years as new capacity is introduced.  Much less change is expected in areas such as fine chemicals, etc.   

  3. Progress in construction of the ZapSibNeftekhim project had amounted to 83.5% by the end of June.  The design of the complex has been completed in full, whilst construction and installation works had achieved 75.7% of schedule.  Elsewhere in West Siberia, gas producer NOVATEK is considering the possibility of building a gas chemical complex in the north of Yamal based at the Sabetta port.  In the Russian Far East, the first large equipment delivery was received in July for the Amur Gas Processing Plant whilst Irkutsk Oil Company is progressing with plans to create a gas-chemical complex. 

  4. In December, a test production plant for calcium carbide is to be started at the idle Khimprom plant site at Volgograd and in the long term there are plans to produce methanol.  In other project news Kuibyshevazot and the Linde Group launched ammonia production at Togliatti in July, whilst Shchekinoazot is close to starting its new methanol/ammonia complex. 

  5. After the launch of the polypropylene plant at the new SOCAR Polymer division later in 2018, SOCAR could challenge other regional producers in the Russian polymer market.  The new polypropylene plant at Sumgait is the first of a significant strategic programme by SOCAR in petrochemicals.  In Central Asia after the start-up of the new BOPP plant in Turkmenistan a plant for BOPP film production is undergoing construction in Uzbekistan under the management of LG International. 

    Russia

    04.10.2018 Metadynea starts new formalin plant

    04.10.2018 Nakhodka methanol & fertiliser project to receive Asian investment

    04.10.2018 Gazprom gas prices for methanol project at Ust Luga

    Russia

    02.10.2018 Russian TDI imports, Jan-Jul 2018

    02.10.2018 Epoxy resins & polyurethane projects Tatarstan


    Belarus

    02.10.2018 Belarussian organic chemical trade, Jan-Jul 2018


    Azerbaijan

    02.10.2018 SOCAR Polymer to start polyethylene production by December 2018

    CENTRAL EUROPE

    28.09.2018 Duslo opens new ammonia plant



    27.09.2018 Gazprom neftekhim Salavat methanol to olefins project

    27.09.2018 Irkutsk Oil Company-Toyo gas chemical project

 



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