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COVID-19 - News digest as of 25.06.2020

June 25/2020

1. Future of Shell Oman GTL project in question

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Plans to build a new gas-to-liquids (GTL) project in Oman between the government and Shell have been thrown into doubt by the global economic downturn, the sultanate"s oil minister Mohammed AL-Rumhy has told S&P Global. "We"ve decided to revisit the GTL with our partners Shell," said Rumhy in a June 11 interview. "We will see what is best for the project, and this work could take up to three months. So, by the third or fourth quarter we will make a final investment decision of some kind on the project. We"ll see how it goes."

2. Reliance-Aramco JV discussions continue, says Mukesh Ambani

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Reliance Industries is continuing talks with Saudi Aramco to form an oil-to-chemicals (O2C) partnership, despite apparent lack of progress as Aramco concentrated on completing a deal to acquire majority stake in Sabic, said Chemweek. In April, analysts said that the collapse in the price of crude oil has raised the risk that the USD15-billion deal for Aramco to acquire a 20% stake in Reliance Industries O2C division may not go through.

3. Gail petrochemical business swings to profit

MOSCOW (MRC) -- State-owned natural gas distributor GAIL India on June 24 reported a 168.9% year-on-year growth in standalone profit for the quarter ended March 2020, driven by tax write-back and strong operating performance, said Moneycontrol. Profit during the quarter increased to Rs 3,018.2 crore from Rs 1,122.23 crore in the same period last year. However, revenue from operations in fell 5.4% to Rs 17,753.12 crore compared to year-ago, hit by nationwide lockdown that began in late March.

4. Braskem completes construction of La Porte PP plant

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Braskem has announced that it has completed construction of its newest polypropylene (PP) production facility at La Porte, Texas, reported Chemweek. The new plant has a designed capacity of over 450,000 metric tons/year and has the capability to produce the entire PP portfolio including homopolymer, impact copolymer and random copolymers. The plant added 50 permanent full-time jobs to support long-term commercial production. Mark Nikolich, Braskem America CEO, said, " As commercial production begins later this year, Braskem will position the new facility"s domestic production capabilities to replace imported polypropylene volumes, which are currently addressing the shortfall in the United States" domestic market. Commercial production activity at the facility, in conjunction with our new global export hub in Charleston, South Carolina, will also directly support Braskem"s global export capability to its clients throughout North America, South America, Europe, and Asia."  
The commissioning process is currently ongoing. During this phase, the company is concluding functional tests and process tests to verify performance of controls and integrated safety systems.  Initial production test runs are anticipated to begin in the next month with the first full scale commercial production activity currently expected in the third quarter of 2020. "The COVID impact on the North American polypropylene industry during April and May affected durable segments such as automotive...
Author:Margaret Volkova
Tags:PP, PE, crude and gaz condensate, car components, gas processing, petrochemistry, Braskem, Gail India Ltd, Reliance Industries, Saudi Aramco, Shell, COVID-19, India, Oman, USA.
Category:General News
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