Japan's Nippon Shokubai incurs Y13.8bn in losses from Himeji blast

13 May 2013 13:44  [Source: ICIS news]

TOKYO (ICIS)--Japanese chemical producer Nippon Shokubai said on Monday the negative impact of last year’s blast at its Himeji plant in Hyogo prefecture on its fiscal 2012 financial results totalled yen (Y) 13.8bn ($136m).

Of the total, an operating loss for the full year to 31 March 2013 of Y13.1bn was incurred solely by the accident on the back of a fall in production and sales volumes, it added.

The the company also said the Himeji explosion cost Nippon Shokubai an extraordinary loss of Y700m.

On 8 May, Nippon Shokubai announced that its net profit for the same period had fallen by 61% year on year to Y8.4bn, while its operating profit declined by 68% to Y10bn.

The company aims to generate a net profit of Y12bn in fiscal 2013, ending March 2014, a 43% year on year increase from fiscal 2012, and an operating profit of Y15bn, a 50% increase, by bringing all of its facilities at the Himeji site operational and raising production and sales volume, Nippon Shokubai said.

Some of the production facilities at the Himeji plant are still under a suspension order from the government following the blast, Nippon Shokubai said, without stating how many individual units are shut.

Among the facilities under the influence of the suspension order, the current operating rate of acrylic acid, against Nippon Shokubai’s worldwide total capacity of 620,000 tonnes, is 26%, a rate which can produce 160,000 tonnes/year. The operating rate of the group's super absorbent polymer is 37%, or 190,000 tonnes/year (the group’s global capacity is 510,000 tonnes/year), a table provided by the company showed.

Nippon Shokubai's current operating rate of acrylates is at 43%, or 100,000 tonnes/year (the group total is 230,000 tonnes/year), the table showed.

The company's hydrosoluble polymer plant at Himeji, which has a capacity of 55,000 tonnes/year, also the company’s sole plant, and its special esters unit, with a capacity of 40,000 tonnes/year at the site, also Nippon Shokubai’s only plant, are currently not in operation, according to the table.

($1 = Y101.83)

By: Tomomi Yokomura
+65 6780 4359

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