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LyondellBasell announced that it has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) to form a 50:50 joint venture (JV) with China Petroleum & Chemical Corporation (Sinopec), one of the largest integrated energy and chemical companies in China.

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Cefic, the European Chemical Industry Council, expects chemical production in the European Union (EU) to have declined by 1 % in 2019 compared to 2018. For 2020, chemical production is expected to stay on the same level as 2019.

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Uzbekistan has started up a new chemical complex at Navoiazot in the Navoi region of Uzbekistan, according to the press service of the Uzbek president. The project, earlier valued at around USD 500 million, has the capacity to produce 300,000 t/y of methanol, 100,000 t/y of polyvinyl chloride (PVC) and 75,000 t/y of caustic soda. CAMC Engineering and HQC (Shanghai) Co. of China were contractors for the project.

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LyondellBasell and China Petroleum & Chemical Corp. (Sinopec) have signed a non-binding memorandum of understanding (MoU) to form a 50-50 joint venture for building a new propylene oxide (PO) and styrene monomer (SM) plant in Zhenhai, Ningbo, China. The facility, which will be based on LyondellBasell's PO/SM technology, is expected to produce 300,000 t/y of PO and 600,000 t/y of SM to serve the domestic market. 

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Foam Expo North America 2020, one of the world’s largest dedicated exhibitions and conferences for the technical foam industry, will take place from 24 – 26 March 2020 in halls A, B and C of the Suburban Collection Showplace in Novi, MI, USA. According to the organiser, Smarter Shows (Tarsus) Limited, the event is a meeting place for the manufacturers, suppliers and buyers of technical foam products and technologies, offering attendees access to innovative machinery and services from across the entire foam supply chain. Moving into its fourth year, the event provides a unique opportunity to network with OEMs and suppliers and keep up-to-date with the latest industry trends.

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On 19 December 2019, PolyOne Corporation announced that it has entered into an agreement with Clariant to purchase its global colour and additive masterbatch business.  In addition, PolyOne has entered into an agreement with Clariant Chemicals India Ltd. to purchase its colour and additive masterbatch business. The combined net purchase price is USD 1.45 billion. The closing of both transactions is subject to customary closing conditions and regulatory approvals and is expected by by mid-2020.

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South Korea said Wednesday (8 January 2020) it will spare no efforts to revitalize the country's petrochemical industry facing a prolonged slump amid growing protectionism and competition.

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The General Directorate of Rubber announced a joint study on family-owned rubber plantations in three provinces to better understand how growers have responded to the sharp drop in rubber prices over the past nine years. The average cost of rubber has fallen from around USD 4,600 per ton in 2011 to about USD 1,350 per ton in early 2020, according to its report.

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On the back of a positive results season, the rubber gloves sector is seeing signs of an uptick in demand in subsequent quarters, says Kenanga Research. In a note, the research house said the 3Q results season came within expectations with volume growth of 6 % and 14 % recorded by Top Glove and Hartalaga respectively. It said its ground checks showed demand for nitrile gloves is picking up again and players' new capacities are being swiftly taken up. Based on its analysis, nitrile gloves market share could experience 30 % growth in 2020.

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