Petkim plans hail better future for Turkey petrochemicals

With a stable and fast-growing economy which held up well during the downturn, Turkey should already have a burgeoning chemical sector. But the country has been running a huge polymer deficit for many years thanks to decades of underinvestment in the country’s national champion, Petkim.  But since successful privatization, Petkim has made bold plans to […]

Continue Reading

Sibur stake is sold to owner of gas group Novatek

Rather out of the blue, Sibur owners Gazprombank have sold a 50% stake in the Russian petrochemical major to a company controlled by Leonid Mikhelson, CEO of Russia’s second-largest gas producer Novatek. Mikhelson has the option to boost this to 100%.  What this means for Sibur is anyone’s guess though Novatek would probably be a good […]

Continue Reading

EU emissions trading will hit coal-reliant CEE chemicals industry

coal mine.jpg

The EU’s Emissions Trading System is likely to put the chemical industry in central and eastern Europe under severe pressure and cause widespread shut downs. The third phase of the ETS kicks into action in 2013 and is based on a benchmarking system.  The most efficient 10% of chemical producers will be 100% exempt from […]

Continue Reading

Could chemicals benefit from European shale gas?

gas tank.jpg

Shale gas has helped push the price of US natural gas and ethane to historically low levels, increasing the competitiveness of the chemical industry there. Until now it has seemed that European chemical producers have developed a structural feedstock disadvantage as it relies mainly on naphtha which is tied to oil prices.  Now, according to […]

Continue Reading

Time is ripe for an IPO in London for Russia’s Sibur

Russian chemical giant, Sibur, is controlled and wholly owned by the country’s gas giant, Gazprom. I think it is high time the company was set free and allowed to boost its potential for growth through an initial public offering. An IPO would give it independence and also access to stock market funds, especially if it […]

Continue Reading

Poland chemicals to lead eastern Europe out of doldrums

Poland and Hungary will lead central and east Europe’s chemical industry out of recession, according to a new forecast by Oxford Economics (see below). Although chemicals output fell by around 10% in late 2008, steady recovery since then has led to a peak of 25% growth at the mid point of 2010 (see graph, page […]

Continue Reading

Reach deadline passes uneventfully – the new Millennium bug?

Today – December 1 – marks the start of a new era in European chemical manufacture. From now any companies which have failed to register substances bought or imported over 1,000 tonnes/year with the European Chemicals Agency will be operating illegally in the European Union. In the build-up to this deadline there had been many, […]

Continue Reading

ECHA and Cefic interviews should reveal Reach sentiment

Ahead of the impending 30 November deadline for Europe’s Reach regulation I have lined up interviews with the European Chemicals Agency’s executive director, Geert Dancet, plus industry trade body Cefic’s Reach expert Erwin Annys.  Europe’s chemical industry has been rushing towards this deadline because failure to comply will mean producers or exporters are doing business […]

Continue Reading

Upbeat CIA dinner but costs of Reach revealed

man on money.jpg

The annual Chemical Industries Association (CIA) dinner took place in London last night with a much more optimistic atmosphere than for the last couple of years. Many of us trade journalists were guest either of the CIA or chemical producers themselves. With the 30 November deadline approaching, Europe’s chemical legislation Reach was a hot topic. […]

Continue Reading

Oltchim privatization plans unveiled

After intervention from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), Romania’s economy ministry aims to sell its 54.79% majority stake in loss-making chemical producer Oltchim, according to ICIS news.  Germany’s Petro Carbo Chem – an activist shareholder is likely to be interested. Economy mnister Ion Ariton is also revealed that Oltchim’s creditors, including Erste Group’s Banca Comerciala Romana could […]

Continue Reading