28 February 2005 00:01 [Source: ACN]
From stories supplied by the CNI and ACN teams.
18 February. Titan Chemicals posted record earnings in 2004 on the back of strong sales, Donald Condon, the company’s managing director, said.
Titan earned Ringgit392m (US$103m) in 2004, almost double the earnings in 2003, he said. The earnings exclude a one-time charge of about Ringgit130m resulting from the merger of Titan Petrochemicals (TPC), Titan Polyethylene (TPE) and Titan PP Polymers (TPP).
Under the merger, TPP acquired the businesses and assets of TPC and TPE.
18 February. Singapore’s chemical industry in 2004 grew by 7.8% over 2003, contributing to a 13.9% growth by the manufacturing sector and an overall gross domestic product growth of 8.4%, according to statistics released by the Ministry of Trade and Industry.
18 February. Malaysia’s Ministry of International Trade and Industry (Miti) has imposed final antidumping duties (ADDs) on maleic anhydride (MA) imports from Taiwan, Indonesia and South Korea.
The ministry had slapped temporary antidumping duties on imports from these three countries on 7 October last year. The ADD on UPC Technology’s products will be 3.45%, while that on other Taiwanese companies, such as Excel Chemicals and Taiwan Synthetic Petrochemical, will be 18.17%. The ADD on MA from Indonesia’s Justus Sakti Raya will be 19.14%, while that on MA from Yongsan Chemicals will be 26.34%.
Miti said the final duties were effective from 4 February and would be for not more than five years.
22 February. Sovereign Asset Management has invested almost Won1000bn (US$975m) in LG Corp and LG Electronics, with holdings in excess of 5% in both companies.
Sovereign said the investments strengthened its commitment to South Korea.
22 February. The sale by Bataan Polyethylene’s (BPE’s) three majority shareholders of their stake in the company to Metro Alliance Holdings and Equities (Manila) will be delayed by up to two months from mid-February, industry sources said.
The delay was blamed on tax issues encountered by one of the shareholders, Petronas.
A source said the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) had asked Petronas to pay taxes on its BPE share purchases from local investors that dated back to 2000. He was unable to provide the exact tax claim by BIR.
‘Petronas is disputing this tax claim,’ he added.
22 February. Major Chinese petrochemical companies are expected to report strong earnings for 2004 owing to strong product prices, analysts said.
The companies are expected to release their results next month or in April.
Despite suffering a 30% net profit drop in the third quarter of last year, Yizheng Chemical Fibre recorded a net profit of Rmb291.9m (US$35.3m) in the first three quarters of 2004, compared with Rmb137.9m during the same period of 2003. The latest Q1-Q3 net profit figure was higher than the company’s 2003 net profit of Rmb259m.
Yangzi Petrochemical Co projected that its net profit in 2004 would be 150-200% higher than in the previous year. The company’s 600 000 tonne/year cracker operator made a net profit of Rmb1.66bn in 2003.
Shanghai Petrochemical Co is also expected to enjoy at least a 100% jump in its 2004 net profit compared with the previous year. The 850 000 tonne/year cracker operator made a net profit of Rmb1.39bn in 2003.
23 February. The World Health Organization (WHO) has warned there is a potential global threat to human health from bird flu.
Dr Shigeru Omi of the WHO told a conference in Vietnam of the ‘gravest possible danger of a flu pandemic’ which would cause a major loss of life.
Thirteen people have died in Vietnam since December, and Thailand and Cambodia have also reported deaths caused by the disease.
The complex, which will be at Camacari, Bahia, will have a capacity of 100 000 tonne/year, of which 30% will be used by Oxiteno.
The plant will make Oxiteno the first fatty alcohols producer in Latin America.
Oxiteno estimated that the plant would increase its sales by US$80m/year.
23 February. Teijin plans to start up a second 50 000 tonne/year polycarbonate (PC) plant in the Zhapu Development Zone in Jiaxing City, China, by December 2006, a spokesman said.
The company had earlier said the plant would start up in 2007. The spokesman said construction work on the plant would start in May this year.
Its first PC plant in Jiaxing is to start commercial production in April.
23 February. The board of directors at Haldia Petrochemicals Ltd (HPL) is expected to meet in March to discuss financial backing for the Chatterjee investment group’s bid for Basell Polyolefins, a company official said.
Basell’s 50:50 joint owners, Shell and BASF, have put it up for sale, and the offer has attracted three interested parties – Ineos, Iran’s National Petrochemical Co, and an Indian consortium headed by the Chatterjee investment group.
24 February. Gail (India) and Iran’s National Petrochemical Co (NPC) have agreed to conduct a joint feasibility study on a new methanol plant in Iran’s South Pars Zone.
The two companies have also agreed, in principle, to commission a separate study to look into setting up a gas-to-liquids complex in the same area.
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