IHS Chemical Week


Chemical industry weekly news roundup, 21 Dec.

2:16 PM MST | December 21, 2012 | By LINDSAY FROST

This Week in CW:

Braskem Idesa (Mexico City)—a jv of Braskem (Brazil) and Grupo Idesa (Mexico)—has received final approval for $3.2 billion in financing for its Ethylene XXI project—a 1.05-million m.t./year ethylene complex at Coatzacoalcos, Mexico, slated for startup in mid-2015. The financing was structured by seven official agencies—including two export agencies in Canada and Italy, two multilateral agencies and three development banks in Brazil and Mexico.

EPA has finalized its Chemical Manufacturing Area Sources (CMAS) rule—with changes made giving the industry more certainty and narrowing the universe of emissions sources affected by the rule. ACC and Socma welcome EPA’s efforts, but say they are disappointed that some of industry’s recommended changes were not included—the biggest drawback, executives say, being that EPA decided to exclude only a subset of the area sources category from Title V operating permit requirements.

Ecolab announced it is pushing back the acquisition date of the $2.2 billion deal with oilfield services firm Champion Technologies. The transaction is now expected to close by 28 February, 2013 due to remaining discussions with the US Department of Justice (DOJ; Washington) regarding antitrust issues surrounding the deal.

Sumitomo Chemical’s subsidiary Valent BioSciences (Libertyville, IL) has signed a definitive agreement to acquire Pace International (Seattle, WA), a global leader in the postharvest segment of commercial agriculture, for $65 million—including its operations in the US, Mexico and South America. Valent previously had a 25% stake in the company and the acquisition is expected to close before the end of 2012.

Around the Web:

The Washington Post has compiled its most important business stories of 2012, citing banks paying for financial crimes, the euro zone crisis, and the large black Friday deals. Highlights include Yahoo’s string of leadership changes, the Facebook IPO and stock woes, and the Dow Jones industrial average plummeting in June.

An article in Gizmodo Australia says Stanford University researchers have invented flexible photovoltaics that peel and stick like decals—much like a “solar-powered business card,” the article says. The flimsier solar cells don’t have to be applied to a hard final layer—which lets them move more than their firmer counterparts and can be attached to almost anything, much like a sticker.

PopularScience (PopSci) has published data compiled by nonprofit organization Transparency International called a “Corruption Perceptions Index”—where countries are ranked based on data from several surveys and assessments for its corruption. Australia measured as the least corrupt, or “very clean” while Somalia measured as the most “highly corrupt.”

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