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COVID-19 - News digest as of 02.03.2021

March 02/2021

1. Indorama reports lower profit despite higher volume

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Thailand-listed Indorama Ventures Ltd (Ltd) expects demand recovery for its products to continue this year after it swung to a net profit of Thai baht (Bt) 1.61bn ($54m) in the fourth quarter of 2020, said Chemweek. Fourth-quarter earnings were driven by stronger production volumes and contributions from its polyethylene terephthalate (PET) business. IVL's overall production rose by 21% year on year to 3.48m tonnes in the fourth quarter. Core EBITDA at its combined PET business rose by 31% year on year to USD177m in October-December 2020. In 2021, the uptrend in crude oil prices is expected to positively impact its PET premiums this year and result in positive inventory valuation gains, IVL said in a statement. "We see robust demand for PET and tightness in the market, which will be positive for spreads across our value chain of paraxylene (PX), purified terephthalic acid (PTA) and monoethylene glycol (MEG)," the company said.

2. Chemtrade loss deepens YOY on finance costs

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Chemtrade Logistics Income Fund (Toronto, Ontario, Canada) reports a fourth-quarter net loss of CD25.8 million (USD20.7 million), down from a loss of CD12.6 million in the prior-year quarter on higher finance costs, said Chemweek. Revenue totaled CD319 million, down 10% year over year (YOY) from CD355 million. Chemtrade attributes the decline in revenue to lower sales volumes and selling prices for caustic soda and hydrochloric acid, and lower sales volumes of sodium chlorate, regen acid, and merchant sulfuric acid. "The year has started with some weather-based challenges and the continuing uncertainty about the duration and extent of the pandemics effects on the economy, says Scott Rook, who becomes Chemtrades president and CEO on 1 March. The pandemic uncertainty means that the outlook for some of our businesses is difficult to predict for 2021, although we are confident that our water solutions business should continue to perform well."

3. Crude oil futures fall on stronger dollar, OPEC+ uncertainty

MOSCOW (MRC) -- Crude oil futures dived during mid-morning trade in Asia March 2, as a stronger US dollar eroded buying sentiment, and as uncertainty over the upcoming OPEC+ meeting continued to weigh on the market, reported S&P Global. At 11:05 am Singapore time (0305 GMT), the ICE Brent May contract was down 96 cents (1.5%) from the March 1 settle to USD62.73/b, while the April NYMEX light sweet crude contract fell $1.07/b (1.76%) to USD59.57/b. The fall in crude prices was precipitated by a stronger US dollar, which makes purchasing oil more expensive for buyers using other currencies. At 10:54 am, the March US Dollar Index futures on ICE was trading at 91.235, up 0.388% from the March 1 settle of 91.036.
Author:Margaret Volkova
Tags:Asia, monoethylene glycol (MEG), crude and gaz condensate, paraxylene (PX), PET-granulate, terephthalic acid, medicine, fertilizers, petrochemistry, packaging, Indorama Ventures PLC, COVID-19, Canada, Russia, Saudi Arabia, USA, Thailand.
Category:General News
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