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Chemicals

Local companies reluctant to revise safety measures

14th October 2011 Science-based products and services company DuPont reports that 35% of South African companies whose employees are exposed to chemicals on a regular basis, are reluctant to review and improve their safety measures. 

Dow expands African footprint with new Algeria, Ghana offices

By: Creamer Media Reporter      5th October 2011 NYSE-listed Dow Chemical Company said on Wednesday that it was expanding its footprint in Africa by opening offices in Algeria and Ghana. Dow chairperson and CEO Andrew Liveris said it was the right time to invest in Africa, which has produced consistent economic growth rates over the past ten... 

Sappi says cogeneration a strong feature of cost reduction plan

By: Brindaveni Naidoo     4th August 2011 South African paper manufacturer Sappi is “aggressively” pursuing restructuring and cost reduction plans, with cogeneration featuring strongly, CEO Ralph Boëttger said on Thursday. The JSE-listed company, which posted a third-quarter loss, said high input costs remained a challenge. 

AECI eyes bigger move into Brazil, also keen on Nigeria expansion 

By: Brindaveni Naidoo     26th July 2011 Acquisitions would play a key role in chemicals and explosives company AECI’s growth strategy, with Brazil and Nigeria key focus areas, CEO Graham Edwards said on Tuesday. In an interview with Engineering News Online, he said that acquisitions worth about $150-million "may be" in the pipeline in... 

AECI in R1.2bn BEE deal, half-year earnings rise

By: Brindaveni Naidoo     26th July 2011 Chemicals and explosives company AECI has entered into a R1.2-billion broad-based black economic-empowerment (BBBEE) transaction comprising permanent employees and a community trust that would fund educational and developmental initiatives. The JSE-listed group, which delivered a stronger... 

Waste offenders face stiff penalties, but enforcement capacity questioned

By: Eleanor Seggie     22nd July 2011 While the National Environmental Management: Waste Act, No 59 of 2008 brings with it abundant opportunities and regulatory tools, it also introduces severe criminal liability for directors and companies.  

Rolfes in R47m deal to buy 70% of AgChem

By: Brindaveni Naidoo     12th July 2011 JSE-listed diversified technology group Rolfes said on Tuesday it had entered into a R46.7-million transaction that would see it acquire 70% of AgChem, a manufacturer of products for the agricultural sector. The acquisition would enable Rolfes to enter the agrichemicals sector and secure more... 

Freeworld earnings down but Kansai ownership opens new markets

By: Loni Prinsloo     24th June 2011 JSE-listed Freeworld Coatings, which was recently taken over by Japanese group Kansai Paints, on Friday reported a drop in earnings for the half-year ended March 31, 2011, but said the company was well positioned for an economic upturn. Earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and... 

Multimaterial 3D printer could help accelerate prototyping  

By: Eleanor Seggie     17th June 2011 Injection-moulding solutions company DemaPlasTech has been appointed as sole Objet distributors for Israeli-based three-dimensional (3D) printing innovations company Objet Geometries’ range of 3D printing products, for Africa, including the Connex multi-material‐based 3D printer – a first for the... 

AECI to lodge land disposal tax appeal in ConCourt

By: Loni Prinsloo     6th June 2011 Chemicals company AECI has lodged an application with the Constitutional Court to appeal a Supreme Court of Appeal ruling last month that the proceeds of property sold by one of its subsidiary companies should be taxed as income. AECI formed a realisation company, Founders Hill in 1993, to which... 

New rock, concrete breaking solution eliminates noise, gases, flying rock and vibration shockwaves 

By: Eleanor Seggie     3rd June 2011 Nondetonating technology developer Green Break Technology’s (GBT’s) patented nondetonating safety power cartridge is set to make a significant impact in the explosives and mechanical breaker markets and presents a shift in mining economically. 

Chemicals group signs Responsible Care commitment

27th May 2011 Chemicals giant DuPont Sub-Saharan Africa has become the latest member of the Chemical and Allied Industries’ Association (Caia) to sign the Responsible Care public commitment.  

Black-owned firm buys Merck SA’s pharmaceuticals operations

By: Mary-Anne O’Donnell     27th May 2011 International pharmaceutical and chemical company Merck South Africa has sold its Merck Pharmaceutical Manufacturing (MPM) operations. 

US researchers find high levels of methane contamination in wells near fracking sites, but think-tank doubts accuracy of study 

By: Eleanor Seggie     27th May 2011 A study by Duke University (Duke) researchers has found high levels of leaked methane in well water collected near shale-gas drilling and hydrofracking sites, reports ScienceDaily.  

Flow chemistry validation aimed at improved ARV production

By: Schalk Burger     20th May 2011 Research-based pharmaceuticals developer iThemba Pharmaceuticals has sent one of its scientists, Dr Darren Riley, to the University of Cambridge to validate the use of a new production technique, called continuous flow chemistry, in ultimately producing frontline HIV medicines for South Africa,... 

Israel backs clean-energy goals with policy, laws and R&D

By: Eleanor Seggie     13th May 2011 Israel aims to reduce coal-generated power to about 40%, increase the use of natural gas to 40%, and have 20% of power generated by renewable sources by 2020, says Israeli Ministry of Industry, Trade & Labor Director General Sharon Kedmi.  

New quality standard important step to establishing a local biofuels industry – SABS

22nd April 2011 The publication of new South African National Standard SANS 833, entitled ‘Biodiesel production – Quality management – Producer requirements’, is an important step towards creating a local biodiesel industry. 

New galvanising facility incorporates environmental enhancements

By: Eleanor Seggie     1st April 2011 Galvaglow, a newly launched hot dip galvanising facility, claims to embrace energy and environmental efficiency enhancements. The Krugersdorp plant includes a full wet scrubber system, which extracts harmful gasses, neutralising them rather than releasing them directly into the atmosphere, says... 

Planning, quality control critical in the chemicals industry

By: Henry Lazenby     18th March 2011 Continuous quality assurance and accurate planning are key factors in achieving efficient supply chain management in the chemicals industry, consulting company Rifle-Shot Performance Holdings CEO and MD Ian Huntly reports. It is critical to know exactly what chemicals, and what grades of... 

Demand for SA fertilisers set to grow

By: Henry Lazenby     18th March 2011 The South African chemicals sector, mainly comprising fertilisers, base chemicals and petrochemicals, is expected to experience slower growth this year, risk analysis firm Coface reports. Coface industry analyst Johan Coetzee says that the fertiliser industry experienced a relatively profitable... 

Chemicals sector to show moderate growth

By: Henry Lazenby     18th March 2011 The South African chemicals industry is expected to grow by about 0,5% to 1,5% above the country’s gross domestic product (GDP) during this year, industry analyst Frost & Sullivan reports. In his 2011 budget speech, Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan outlined that real GDP growth is projected to... 

Product stewardship key to ensuring safety

18th March 2011 Chemicals safety initiatives in emerging economies in Africa are being hampered by serious gaps in the availability of skills and a lack of capacity in the management and stewardship of chemicals and chemical products, says the Zambia-based Africa regional representative for the Strategic... 

SMMEs thrive with business incubator’s assistance

By: Henry Lazenby     18th March 2011 Business incubator Sasol ChemCity reports that its efforts to support new and existing businesses have resulted in more than 85% of those small, medium-sized and micro enterprises (SMMEs) in the chemicals, energy and related services sector still being in business one year after receiving... 

Aggressive chemicals-resistant pump introduced

18th March 2011 Equipment supplier Air & Vacuum Technologies reports that it has introduced a new chemicals-resistant pump to the Southern African market. The new Minichem pump, from UK-based original-equipment manufacturer Flotronic Pumps, is intended for customers which need to transfer aggressive chemicals... 

Sasol wax reactor key to doubling output

18th March 2011 South African petrochemicals group Sasol says a 712 t hard wax reactor, which was recently delivered to its Sasol One site, in Sasolburg, is a key component of the group’s plans to double its hard wax production capacity in South Africa. 

New chemical-resistant pump distributed in South Africa

18th March 2011 Industrial consumables and engineering firm Bearing Man Group’s (BMG’s) Filtration division has introduced the Pall Ultipleat stress resistant technology (SRT) Pall filter unit (PFU) filters, which can be used in chemicals plants, to the local market.  

Range of medical grade polymers expanded

18th March 2011 International chemicals giant DuPont reports that it has broadened the available range of high-performance polymers with healthcare specific manufacturing applications. These high-grade polymers are intended to support healthcare companies that use polymers to produce new and innovative medical... 

Company ramps up biodiesel catalyst manufacturing capacity

18th March 2011 International chemicals company BASF has announced its intention to build a second sodium methylate production plant in South America. The plant will be located in Argentina, and will be designed to produce about 60 000 t/y of the chemical. 

HIV/Aids programme supports chemicals sector employees

By: Henry Lazenby     18th March 2011 Regional industry association, the Durban Chemicals Cluster (DCC) in KwaZulu-Natal, in partnership with the South African Business Coalition on HIV/Aids, report that it wants to expand an HIV/Aids workplace awareness and treatment programme for member companies’ employees. 

Chemically inert fibre used in propulsion solution

18th March 2011 Wind propulsion technology developer SkySails has applied fibre manufacturer DSM Dyneema’s proprietary ultrahigh molecular-weight polyethylene fibre, reputed to be one of the strongest known synthetic fibres, to create a sustainable propulsion solution, in the form of towing kites for the... 

AECI says its units well positioned to take advantage of any market growth

By: Dennis Ndaba     11th March 2011 Industrial chemicals and explosives group AECI says that its businesses are well-positioned to take advantage of market growth 

Global spotlight on the importance of chemistry in society

4th March 2011 The International Year of Chemistry (IYC) 2011 is well under way, with activities including a global water experiment taking place at schools around the world. 

Sasol to pay R111m for polypropylene collusion, contests excessive pricing charge 

By: Terence Creamer     28th February 2011 The Competition Tribunal has confirmed a settlement agreement reached between chemicals and energy group Sasol and the Competition Commission in December, whereby Sasol agreed to pay a fine of R111,6-million for colluding with Safripol to fix the price of polypropylene. Polypropylene is a... 

Seven projects worth R7bn have applied for SA’s manufacturing tax incentive

By: Terence Creamer     11th February 2011 The South African government has to date received seven applications for manufacturing projects seeking to tap a R20-billion tax incentive, formally launched late last year, and which was given prominence in President Jacob Zuma’s February 10 State of the Nation address. Although Zuma presented... 

Sasol says 712 t wax reactor arrives in Sasolburg 

By: Petronel Smit     9th February 2011 A 712 t reactor for Sasol’s R8,4-billion wax expansion project arrived in Sasolburg on Wednesday, completing its four-week journey from Richards Bay. The 150 m long convoy comprised the superabnormal load of a wax reactor and a quench tower, and was transported in two loads at a speed of about... 

SA chemicals industry meets to discuss compliance with new global standards

By: Mary-Anne O’Donnell     4th February 2011 The Chemical and Allied Industries Association (CAIA) held the 2011 Responsible Care and Product Stewardship Workshop last week at the University of the Witwatersrand, in Johannesburg. 

Sustainability and collaboration emerge as key African themes for International Year of Chemistry

By: Eleanor Seggie     4th February 2011 The role of chemistry in Africa’s future development was the theme of the fortieth South African Chemical Institute (SACI) convention, held recently at the University of the Witwatersrand, in Johannesburg. The convention was the first in a series of events planned by the International Union of... 

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