Europe top stories: weekly summary

Author: Niall Swan


LONDON (ICIS)--Here are some of the top stories from ICIS Europe for the week ended 8 February.

Global MMA operating rates slashed amid oversupply
Operating rates at global methyl methacrylate (MMA) producers have been cut in order to manage the current oversupply.

German court probes fatal 2016 BASF explosion
A German court began hearing charges related to the 2016 explosion at BASF’s Ludwigshafen petrochemicals production hub that ended up killing five people and injuring 44.

Europe 2019 soda ash prices grow by double digits amid tight fundamentals
Participants in the European soda ash market have settled 2019 annual contracts with increases of €15/tonne compared with 2018 business, depending on the account, starting point and region, sources said.

Braskem, Haldor Topsoe partner on renewable MEG pilot plant
Brazil’s Braskem and Denmark’s Haldor Topsoe have reached mechanical completion on the first phase of a demonstration plant that will produce bio-based monoethylene glycol (MEG) from sugars, the companies said.

Global IPEX falls further in January but Asia creeps higher
Petrochemical and polymer prices began to fall in September last year and generally continued the downward march in January.

Europe cracker maintenance preparations in good shape, but limited flexibility for the unexpected
Good preparations have been made to cover Europe’s heavy 2019 cracker maintenance slate, although doubts remain.

Circular economy will require ‘heavy’ investments in new chemicals - ECHA chief
It may take more than half a century to make the European economy circular, but the sooner “heavy investments” are made in new chemicals the less of a burden this will place on future generations, according to the chief of the EU’s chemicals regulator.

Sasol's US Lake Charles cracker completion pushed back five months as costs mount
Sasol has pushed back the estimated start-up date for its new cracker in Lake Charles, Louisiana to July, a five-month delay from its most recent estimate, as projected costs of the petrochemicals complex continue to rise, the South Africa-headquartered producer said.


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