Americas top stories: weekly summary

Source: ICIS News

2019/01/14

HOUSTON (ICIS)--Here are the top stories from ICIS News from the week ended 11 January.

Shell starts production at new US alpha olefins unit Shell has started production at its fourth alpha olefins (AO) unit at its Geismar, US, complex, bringing total production of the material at the site to 1.3m tonnes/year, the Anglo-Dutch energy and petrochemicals major said on Monday.

OUTLOOK '19: Crude oil/MARPOL stir uneasy waves for Americas base oils Going into 2019, two items are stirring uneasy waves for the Americas base oil market: crude oil prices and the MARPOL (International Convention for the Prevention of Pollution from Ships) initiatives under the IMO (International Marine Organization) on new sulphur content guidelines for marine fuels.

OUTLOOK '19: Two new methanol units starting in the Americas Two new methanol plants are scheduled to start up in 2019 in the Americas, one in the US and the other in Trinidad and Tobago.

INSIGHT: Synchronised global slowdown led by China hits chemicals outlook It’s not news that China’s economy is slowing. Weakness in the manufacturing sector in particular has been apparent for years, and now exacerbated by the US-China trade war. However, the magnitude of the decline comes as a surprise and piles on top of the growing heap of macro concerns.

US Prairie Catalytic's bioethanol-to-etac plant start-up delayed to late Q1 The start-up of Prairie Catalytic’s new 50,000 tonne/year ethyl acetate (etac) plant in Nebraska has been delayed until the end of the first quarter, a company official confirmed.

US ethylene spot prices lower on upstream US ethylene spot prices narrowed with a slightly lower midpoint than the prior week amid a decline in upstream ethane costs, and as sentiment was hampered by anticipated production from new capacity.