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Chemicals & Pharmaceuticals News

US firm develops ‘simpler, more efficient’ algae oil extracting process

By: Leandi Kolver     8th May 2009 American bioenergy company OriginOil has developed what it has described as a “breakthrough oil extraction technology” that may help transform algae into a competitive transport fuel. In addition to integrating the process into its own production system, OriginOil also plans to commercialise the... 

SA subject to two new antidumping measures

By: Creamer Media Reporter      7th May 2009 Products exported from South Africa were subject to two new antidumping measures that were implemented by other nations in the second half of 2008, the World Trade Organisation (WTO) said on Thursday. The organisation revealed that 138 new final antidumping measures had been implemented during... 

Sasol to pay R188m fine to settle fertiliser cases

6th May 2009 Petrochemicals firm Sasol will pay a penalty of R188-million for contravening South Africa’s competition legislation by fixing prices in the fertiliser sector. This fine is the highest settlement reached with the Competition Commission to date, and is based on 6% of the turnover of the Sasol... 

KZN city moves on safe drums vision

By: Leandi Kolver     1st May 2009 After three years of planning, KwaZulu-Natal’s eThekwini City Health is ready to move on the implementation of the ‘Safe and Happy Drums’ project. The drums have not been used before, and are safe for food and water storage. 

Infrastructure roll-out could boost SA’s industrial paints sector

By: Creamer Media Reporter      16th April 2009 The South African industrial paints and coatings market could increase the value of its yearly sales to $195,1-million by 2014, with demand likely to be lifted as construction companies moved to complete infrastructure projects. “The booming infrastructure and construction industry is fuelling... 

It will soon be illegal to sell hazardous drums to street traders 

By: Leandi Kolver     10th April 2009 It will soon become illegal in KwaZulu-Natal for street vendors to trade in formerly used packaging drums, says Responsible Container & Packaging Management Association of South Africa (RCMASA) president Liz Anderson, who hopes that other regions will follow suit. 

Global regulatory changes to affect industrial packaging industry

By: Leandi Kolver     10th April 2009 A number of regulatory changes has been made by the United Nations (UN) regarding the transport of dangerous goods and the globally harmonised system of classification and labelling of chemicals, which will affect the entire industrial packaging industry. 

Necsa launches fluorochemical expansion initiative

By: Esmarie Iannucci     24th March 2009 The Nuclear Energy Corporation of South Africa’s (Necsa’s) chemical division, Pelchem, on Tuesday launched the Fluorochemical Expansion Initiative (FEI) aimed at establishing value-adding fluorochemical industries in the country. The FEI, which would increase the local consumption of fluorspar,... 

Growth awaits downstream chemicals sector

20th March 2009 The downstream sector of South Africa’s chemicals industry has been identified as having substantial growth and employment potential by the Department of Trade and Industry (DTI), reports Creamer Media’s Research Channel Africa. 

Phosphate producer 
considers JSE listing

20th March 2009 Processor and producer of phosphate and phosphoric acid, Foskor, is considering listing on the JSE. 

Improved competitiveness key to EU chemicals 
industry survival

20th March 2009 The overall competitiveness of the European Union’s (EU’s) chemicals industry, compared with other regions of the world, must be enhanced, says the EU High Level Group (HLG) on the Competitiveness of the European Chemicals Industry in a report issued in February in Brussels. 

Synthetic-fuels plant to 
upgrade electricity 

20th March 2009 Multinational US technology and services conglomerate General Electric (GE) has signed a R500-million contract to upgrade electricity generation turbines at petrochemicals giant Sasol’s synthetic-fuels plant at Secunda, in Mpumalanga. 

Pump manufacturer reinforces petrochemical offering rebranding

By: Liam Morrison     20th March 2009 International vacuum pump manufacturer and supplier Busch Vacuum is actively rebranding its petrochemical pump offering in South Africa and internationally. 

EU outlines priorities for chemicals industry development

20th March 2009 The European Union (EU) outlined in February key factors crucial for sustaining the success of the 27-member bloc's chemicals industry, which employs 1,2-million people and is a world trade leader. 

Sasol chemicals at a glance

20th March 2009 Sasol's chemical businesses produce a variety of commodity and higher-value petrochemicals, fertilisers, mining explosives and pipeline gas. Its products are derived from the beneficiation (the reduction of the sulphur and mineral content) of gas coal at Sasolburg, from feedstock purchased from... 

Economic crisis could yield more entrepreneurs

By: Darren Parker     20th March 2009 In spite of the current economic turmoil, a possible ‘silver lining' for small business development may exist in that corporate downsizing and factory layoffs could yield more potential entrepreneurs, says entrepreneurial developer ChemCity business development manager Herman Berry. This could... 

SA foundry carves international niche in petrochemicals industry

20th March 2009 South African foundry Steloy Castings has established itsself as a global supplier of high-alloy steel components to the local and international oil refining and petrochemicals industry. 

SA chemicals and petrochemicals industry in focus 

By: Loni Prinsloo     20th March 2009 South Africa’s chemical and petrochemicals industry is of substantial economic significance to the country, contributing around 5% to gross domestic product and about 25% of its manufacturing sales. 

Global downturn expected to impact Sasol's chemicals unit

By: Chanel de Bruyn     9th March 2009 Despite the chemicals cluster of petrochemicals company Sasol having achieved a strong performance in the first half of the 2009 financial year, CFO Christine Ramon on Monday warned that the outlook for the cluster in the second half of the year did not look as rosy. She expected a sharp... 

Rolfes profit down, says demand for some products dropped

By: Chanel de Bruyn     2nd March 2009 By adding more products to its range, exploring new local “territories” and by maintaining its market share where it could, JSE-listed diversified technology company Rolfes Technology, was hopeful that it could maintain sales for the remainder of the 2009 financial year. The company on Monday... 

AECI pushed ahead with capex programme

By: Esmarie Iannucci     24th February 2009 JSE-listed chemicals and explosives firm AECI would continue its capital expenditure programme, despite the current depressed economic climate, CEO Graham Edwards said on Tuesday. “The whole of the group is really in a capital cycle. This year is the last year of big spending, and some of the... 

AECI FY headline earnings jump 16%

By: Esmarie Iannucci     24th February 2009 JSE-listed chemicals and explosives group AECI reported a 16% increase in headline earnings a share t o R443-million, or 412c a share, the company reported on Tuesday. However, AECI stated that headline earnings for the year ended December 31, were adversely impacted by the costs associated with... 

Heating company receives petrochemicals plant refurbishment contract

By: Loni Prinsloo     13th February 2009 Supplier of industrial heating equipment Unitemp has been awarded a R6-million-plus, contract at a large local petrochemicals plant to refurbish a number of the plant's flange heater assemblies. 

Construction chemicals firm headline earnings up 37%

By: Creamer Media Reporter      10th February 2009 Altx-listed a.b.e Construction Chemicals has reported a 37% increase in headline earnings for the six months ended November, while turnover rose by 27%. “We are extremely pleased with our results, as even in the present economic climate, all divisions performed in line with, or above,... 

Sasol to report on outcome of capex review in March

By: Terence Creamer     29th January 2009 Energy group Sasol – which announced earlier this month that it was reviewing its R16-billion 2009 capital programme, as well as its R70-billion, three-year project pipeline in light of deteriorating market conditions – reported on Thursday that details of the review would be released together... 

Sasol to review R70bn capex pipeline as it warns of lower year earnings

By: Terence Creamer     21st January 2009 Energy and chemicals group Sasol announced on Wednesday that it was officially reviewing and reprioritising its planned R70-billion, three-year capital expenditure programme in the light of dramatically altered and weakening market conditions. The company, which is also South Africa’s largest... 

Rolfes says Triangle Solvents acquisition unconditional

By: Creamer Media Reporter      14th January 2009 All suspensive conditions for the acquisition of Triangle Solvents by chemicals producer, Rolfes Chemicals, have now been met, the JSE-listed company said on Wednesday. The company had announced in October that it would acquire the entire issued share capital of New Heights 390, trading as... 

KBR awarded Sasol contracts worth $2,7m  

By: Chanel de Bruyn     12th December 2008 US-based engineering firm KBR has been awarded two contracts, with a combined value of about $2,7-million, by petrochemicals giant Sasol for projects in Sasolburg. The firm had been awarded an engineering, procurement and project management (EPCM) contract for Sasol's high-sulphur diesel... 

Sasol’s share buyback to continue despite global financial woes - CEO

By: Esmarie Iannucci     28th November 2008 Petrochemicals producer Sasol was planning to go ahead with its share repurchase programme, despite current global financial difficulties, its CEO said on Friday. “Clearly the board will take into account the current circumstances. As we have indicated, our financials, balance sheet, and cash... 

Omnia interim profit up 285%

26th November 2008 JSE-listed specialist chemical services company Omnia’s profit for the six months ended September rose by 285% to R373-million, the company reported on Wednesday. Headline earnings increased by 99% from R319-million in the first half of 2007, to R372-million in the six-month period under... 

Organic waste could be viable energy source

14th November 2008 Organic waste generated in South Africa has the potential to generate an alternative energy source, through harvesting biogas from the fermentation of the organic fraction of municipal solid waste (OFMSW). This process could thus assist in providing heat and electricity. 

Accentuate's E Cape pilot power plant operational

By: Esmarie Iannucci     5th November 2008 AltX-listed flooring and chemicals group Accentuate’s chemical subsidiary Safic Environmental Solutions will scale down its product range to focus on more niche markets. Safic MD Eric Platt said on Wednesday it needed to find a niche for the company’s chemical products, in an already fully... 

Omnia expects 275% to 285% rise in interim earnings

By: Creamer Media Reporter      31st October 2008 Diversified specialist chemical services company Omnia expects headline earnings and basic earnings to increase by between 275% and 285% for the six months ended September 30, it said on Friday. This was compared with the results for the half-year ended September 2007. 

Sasol commits R250m over 10 years to boost science, technology skills 

By: Guy Copans     21st October 2008 Petrochemicals giant Sasol on Tuesday announced an annual financial injection of R25-million into South African academia to ensure the development of world-class science and engineering graduates, to help retain and attract talented academics to teach at universities and to grow the engineering... 

Omnia sees interim earnings up fourfold, shares surge

By: Mariaan Webb     21st October 2008 Diversified specialist chemical services company Omnia’s share price surged on Tuesday, after the company said that interim earnings could increase almost fourfold. Omnia stated that headline and basic earnings could increase by between 270% and 290% for the six months ended September 30, when... 

Sasol will have to deposit full €318m regardless of any wax-case appeal

By: Terence Creamer     2nd October 2008 JSE-listed energy group Sasol will have to deposit the full €318-million amount that it has been fined by the European Commission for its leadership role in a paraffin-wax cartel, dubbed the ‘paraffin mafia', within three months, regardless of whether it decides to appeal or not. Commission... 

Sasol makes the Dow Jones sustainability index cut

By: Esmarie Iannucci     25th September 2008 Synfuel producer Sasol has been listed on the Dow Jones Sustainability World Index (DJSI), which comprises the leading 10% of the largest 2 500 global companies, in terms of sustainability. Sasol CEO Pat Davies said that this was a great achievement for Sasol, and that it was the first time the... 

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