Potash market power

Have Indian fertiliser companies been able to break a stranglehold that major producers have on the global potash market? Indian papers are full of reports on how Indian companies have succeeded in doing this by securing a contract price of $460/tonne for supplies in 2009-10, about $165/tonne lower than the previous contract. The drop comes […]

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Plastics problem

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We may finally be seeing some balance in the debate on plastic bags and pollution. Rather than being swayed by NGOs to introduce a blanket ban on plastic bags, Jairam Ramesh, the new environment minister, is pushing for greater recycling, better waste management and the use of biodegradable plastics. Scenes such as the one below […]

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Budget blues

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With the budget offering little to the chemicals industry it is time to pile on to the rural rickshaw and hope for a trickle down efect from the enhanced spending that the government has planned in this part of India. Photo by BriceFR This is entirely possible. More money in the hands of the rural […]

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Empty promises

The 100-day fever is fast spreading and the Ministry of Chemicals & Fertilisers is the latest casualty. A very bland press release outlining what the ministry plans to achieve over the next three months has come my way. I started reading the release with a great deal of scepticism and was convinced at the end […]

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Silicone story

I was at a Dow Corning press conference yesterday for the launch of an expanded Xiameter platform in India, another step in its effort to tackle commoditisation of the silicones business. The no-frills Xiameter, a web-based ordering service, was launched a few years back as customers had become familiar with silicone products and were no […]

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PP anti dumping duty shocks

Anti-dumping duty (ADD) on polypropylene (PP) imports from Singapore, Saudi Arabia and Oman has finally been announced. And the high level of duties, which are company specific and range from $44.40/tonne to $1,033.65/tonne, has upset many processors and importers. I have been told that one of the reasons for imposing a stiff penalty is because […]

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More changes at Jubilant?

Jubilant Organosys appears to be taking one more step in transforming itself into a pharmaceutical company. The company is looking at selling its industrial and performance products division and expects to realise Rs3.0-3.5bn from the sale, says this report in today’s Economic Times. There was no official confirmation on this from the company. The division, […]

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Ouch! That hurts

I have been hearing that the Indian government will soon announce preliminary antidumping duty (ADD) on polypropylene (PP) imports from Saudi Arabia, Singapore and Oman. A few lucky producers/exporters have escaped but there are many who face a stiff duty of as much as a few hundred dollars, say my friends from the industry. Polymer […]

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Stimulus planned for textiles

India’s synthetic fibre and fibre intermediate produces will be happy to know that the textile industry is likely to soon receive a number of incentives from the government. A stimulus package, due to be announced next month, would include subsidies on interest and additional funds for technology upgradation, says this report. This is needed as […]

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Students still love IT

Indian information technology (IT) companies may no longer be queuing up at campuses for fresh graduates but engineering students continue to rank this sector above all others, according to the latest Nielsen Campus Track T-Schools study. Chemicals, not surprisingly, does not figure on the list although oil and gas was seen as the ‘industry of […]

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