Latest Market News

Italian plastic packaging tax delayed to 2026

  • Spanish Market: Petrochemicals
  • 16/05/24

The Italian Senate has voted to postpone the introduction of a plastic packaging tax for another two years until 1 July 2026.

Parliament originally approved legislation to impose a tax on single-use plastic packaging in the 2020 financial year. But it has been a contentious and complex political issue that has received push back from the industry, resulting in its introduction being postponed seven times.

The proposed tax is expected to follow a similar model to Spain's existing plastic tax, with the tax rate in Italy's legislation fixed at €0.45/kg of virgin plastic.

The tax is designed to cover plastic products such as bottles, bags, food containers, bubble wrap, caps and other single-use plastic items. Recycled plastics and compostable plastics will be exempt.


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22/07/24

US House to vote on waterways bill

US House to vote on waterways bill

Houston, 22 July (Argus) — The US House of Representatives is expected to vote on 22 July on a waterways bill that would authorize new infrastructure projects across ports and rivers. The Water Resources Development Act (WRDA) is renewed typically every two years to authorize projects for the US Army Corps of Engineers (Corps). The bipartisan bill is sponsored by representative Rick Larsen (D-Washington) and committee chairman Sam Graves (R-Missouri). The full committee markup occurred 26 June, where amendments were added, and the bill was passed to the full House . A conference committee will need to be called to resolve the different versions of the bill. The major difference between the bills is that the House bill does not include an adjustment to the cost-sharing structure for the lock and dam construction and other rehabilitation projects. The Senate Committee on Environment Public Works passed its own version of the bill on 22 May, with all members in favor of the bill. The House version of the bill approves modifications to the Seagirt Loop Channel near the Baltimore Harbor in Maryland, along with 11 other projects and 160 feasibility studies. One of these studies is a $314.25mn resiliency study of the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway, which connects ports along the Gulf of Mexico from St Marks, Florida, to Brownsville, Texas. By Meghan Yoyotte Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

Mitsubishi, Neste aim to boost bio-naphtha supplies


16/07/24
16/07/24

Mitsubishi, Neste aim to boost bio-naphtha supplies

Tokyo, 16 July (Argus) — Japanese trading house Mitsubishi and Finnish refiner Neste plan to boost sales of Neste's biomass-based naphtha by enhancing their partnership in Japan. The companies signed a partnership agreement on an unspecified date, aiming to co-operate on prompting a switch from conventional petroleum naphtha to Neste's bio-naphtha. They plan to encourage Japanese downstream companies or users of petrochemical goods and plastics, like food and beverage suppliers, apparel firms and electric appliance manufacturers, to introduce bio-naphtha into their supply chains. Mitsubishi and Neste have already partnered on delivering bio-naphtha to produce renewable paraxylene for Japanese consumers Goldwin and Suntory . Japanese companies are increasingly attempting to incorporate bio-naphtha for their decarbonisation strategies. Japanese petrochemical producer Resonac has produced biomass-based olefins like ethylene and propylene since June by purchasing bio-naphtha from Neste. Fellow petrochemical producer Mitsui Chemicals bought bio-naphtha from Neste to process it at its Osaka cracker. Idemitsu and Toray have been partnering to produce styrene monomer and acrylonitrile butadiene styrene resin from bio-naphtha. Japan imported 6mn t of petroleum naphtha during January-May, down by 5.9pc from the same period in 2023, according to finance ministry data. By Nanami Oki Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

US Gulf polymer plants restarting following hurricane


12/07/24
12/07/24

US Gulf polymer plants restarting following hurricane

Houston, 12 July (Argus) — Some US Gulf Coast polymer plants and rail lines are resuming operations following shutdowns as a result of Hurricane Beryl earlier in the week. Multiple polyethylene (PE) and polypropylene (PP) units shut down pre-emptively before the storm, which came ashore in Matagorda, Texas, on 8 July, and many are still in the process of restarting. Formosa Plastics had pre-emptively shut down operations at its Point Comfort, Texas, site, but did not receive any major damage from Hurricane Beryl. The site, including approximately 1.8mn t/yr of PE and 917,000 t/yr of PP production, is in the process of resuming operations with the end of next week as the target date for a complete return, the company said in a statement. The status of multiple other PE and PP units in the region was not immediately available. Companies including Dow, Ineos, Braskem America, and LyondellBasell, which all had some units shut down during the storm, did not immediately respond to requests for operational updates. In addition to plant outages, polymer producers had been experiencing transportation issues earlier in the week due to flooding, but the repair of Union Pacific's lines in the Galveston area yesterday has allowed rail operations to resume, according to a statement from the company. It will take several days to work through the remaining train congestion, and widespread power outages will likely continue to cause delays throughout the impacted area. By Cole Sullivan Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

China's Wanhua starts up polyolefin elastomer unit


12/07/24
12/07/24

China's Wanhua starts up polyolefin elastomer unit

Shanghai, 12 July (Argus) — Chinese producer Wanhua Chemical has started up its new 200,000 t/yr polyolefin elastomer (POE) unit on 29 June, with its first batch of POE loaded and dispatched on 10 July. This is China's second POE unit after Hainan Beiouyi's 30,000 t/yr unit, which started operations in December 2023. The POE produced by domestic producers uses ethylene and 1-butene as feedstock, as the mass production of feedstock 1-octene has not yet been achieved in China. Wanhua Chemical has started building the second phase of the POE project, with a production capacity of 400,000 t/yr, at Penglai, Shandong province. It is expected to start operations by the end of 2025, bringing the company's total POE capacity to 600,000 t/yr. Wanhua Chemical is a state-owned company in Shandong, with businesses covering polyurethane, petrochemicals and fine chemicals, among others. Wanhua Chemical owns and operates a 450,000 t/yr high-density/linear low-density polyethylene (HD/LLDPE) unit, a 350,000 t/yr HDPE unit, and a 300,000 t/yr polypropylene unit. China's new POE production capacities t/yr Company Location Capacity (t/yr) Start-up date Wanhua Chemical Yantai Shandong 200,000 29-Jun-24 Wanhua Chemical Yantai Shandong 400,000 End 2025 Lianyungang Petrochemical (Zhejiang Satellite) Lianyungang Jiangsu 100,000 2025 Sinopec Maoming Petrochemical Maoming Guangdong 50,000 2025 Shandong Jingbo Petrochemical Binzhou Shandong 100,000 2025 Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

Lummus, MOL to build Hungary pyrolysis plant


11/07/24
11/07/24

Lummus, MOL to build Hungary pyrolysis plant

London, 11 July (Argus) — Technology licenser Lummus and Hungarian oil firm Mol have started construction designs for a pyrolysis chemical recycling plant at Mol's site in Tiszaujvaro, Hungary. It will have a processing capacity of 40,000 t/yr of mixed plastic waste. The plant will produce pyrolysis oil for the Mol petrochemicals facility at the same location, which has a capacity of 660,000 t/yr for ethylene and 335,000 t/yr for polymer-grade propylene. Mol and Lummus signed an agreement to integrate pyrolysis chemical recycling at its refining and petrochemical sites in Slovakia and Hungary in 2023 . Mol indicated at the time it aimed for production capacities of more than 100,000 t/yr of recycled plastic by 2030. By George Barsted Send comments and request more information at feedback@argusmedia.com Copyright © 2024. Argus Media group . All rights reserved.

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