Montachem Welcomes:

 

Esteban Parra 

Esteban has a professional degree in Engineering from  Universidad de Antioquia  and in Management Marketing – Universidad de Medellín specialization certificate. He is fluent in Spanish, Portuguese and English  and has  more than seven (7) years of experience working as a KAM for international companies such a Propilco (Essenttia) and Givaudan Colombia.

 

 

 


 

Maria Restrepo 

Natalia Restrepo has joined Montachem International, Inc. as a Credit Analyst in the Fort Lauderdale office reporting Aamer Barakat. Prior to Montachem, Natalia worked for American Express and Wells Fargo Bank. In addition to English, Natalia is fluent in Spanish and conversational in Portuguese.

 

 

 

 


 

Upcoming Events:

12th Annual GPCA Forum: November 27-29, 2017 | Dubai, UAE

 

The chemical industry has always had challenges to face, but today the number of geopolitical and other pressures impacting the landscape are almost unprecedented. Companies have faced a financial crash and slump in oil prices, but now a confluence of factors means that keeping abreast of current developments is even more vital. Alongside political and free trade tensions, feedstock competition and the continued rise of domestic production in China – whose ‘One Belt One Road’ will take them deeper into existing and emerging markets – companies must keep pace with the digital revolution, ‘The Internet of Things’ and cyber security in order to remain competitive.

 

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To meet with JC Avila and Camilo Rios at GPCA2017 click here

 


 

Market Update:

International News:

Chevron, Total Pull Foreign Staff in Venezuela

 

Repsol SA pulled all foreign workers from its oil fields in Venezuela amid a deepening political crisis, while Chevron Corp. and Total SA have removed a small number of employees, said people with knowledge of the companies. Norway’s Statoil ASA has withdrawn its expatriate staff.

Repsol field workers left the country in the past few weeks, two people said, asking not to be identified discussing a confidential matter. A skeleton staff remains in Caracas, one of the people said. Chevron has removed fewer than 10 foreign employees and retains a substantial expatriate workforce there, said people with knowledge who weren’t authorized to discuss the operations. Statoil withdrew its last three foreign workers before the July 30 election, Erik Haaland, a company spokesman said.

.Eni SpAThe departure of workers will be a concern to the government because oil output, which has tumbled over the past two years, accounts for 95 percent of Venezuela’s foreign-currency earnings. Repsol gets about 10 percent of its production from the country, where it owns a stake in the Carabobo heavy-oil field. The Spanish company also is a partner in the Perla project, Latin America’s largest offshore gas deposit, together with

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Rodrigo Orihuela, “Chevron, Total Pull Foreign Staff in Venezuela”, Bloomberg, August 7, 2017

 


 

US News:

Does Foxconn plant mean rebith of U.S. supply chain?

Now that Taiwanese electronics manufacturing giant Foxconn has announced plans for a $10 billion investment in Wisconsin to make display panels, some are wondering if it means a return for the U.S. manufacturing supply chain in electronics.

According to press reports, Foxconn executives say the Wisconsin factory will be the first in a series of U.S. investments. They and government officials point to the supporting industries it’s expected to draw.

I recently watched a panel discussion on “Manufacturing Under the Trump Administration,” at the Brookings Institution in Washington, and the idea of rebuilding the U.S. supply chain in electronics came up, specifically.

An executive with computer maker Lenovo basically told the audience at the July 13 event to take a deep breath.

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Steve Toloken, “Does Foxconn plant mean rebirth of U.S. supply chain?”, Plastics News, July 27, 2017

 


 

Sustainability:

New Zealand opens its first PET recycling plant

Wellington, New Zealand — New Zealand’s first PET recycling plant has opened with the help of a government subsidy.

Keith Smith, CEO of Flight Plastics Ltd. in Wellington, told Plastics News the parent company, Flight Group Ltd., spent NZ$12 million (US$8.8 million)on a full upgrade at its facility, including a wash plant for PET bottles.

NZ$4 million (US$2.9 million)of the total was a grant from the New Zealand government’s Waste Minimization Fund, which supports projects that reduce environmental harm. The fund is backed by a levy charged on waste disposed of at landfills.

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Kate Tilley, “New Zealand open its first PET recycling plant”, Plastics News, August 8, 2017

 


 

Prices:

Spot resin trading surged Monday, which was the end of July, turning the month from only about average to actually exceptional. Film grades including LDPE, LLDPE and HMWPE were the most actively transacted materials; while completed Polypropylene volumes were okay, they were still somewhat uninspiring. Railcar offerings were fairly steady, though we found resellers warehoused inventories to be on the lighter side. Spot levels for both Polyethylene and Polypropylene were mixed. Overall exports were a bit better, with good buying seen from Latin America. There are August price increase nominations for both PE and PP, both have some potential, but are far from a slam-dunk.

The major energy markets generated mixed results amid reduced volatility. WTI Crude Oil saw just a $2/bbl trading range, which was fully established early in the week. The September futures contract essentially held on to the previous week’s sharp gain when it settled this Friday at $49.58/bbl, leaving a scant $.13/bbl loss. Sept Brent Oil futures picked up a small $.20/bbl gain and ended the week at $52.42/bbl. Natural Gas prices began under pressure and the market continued to soften as the days spun by. The Sept futures contract went into the weekend at $2.774/mmBtu, which was $.167/mmBtu below the previous Friday close.

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Plastics in Public Policy:

Representatives from Mexico, Canada lay out NAFTA negotiation plans

Francisco Sandoval-Saqui, a Mexican trade official working in the Ministry of the Economy, speaks at the Management Briefing Seminars in Traverse City, Mich.

 

Traverse City, Mich. — Trade representatives from Canada and Mexico agree with the Trump administration’s assertion that two-decade-old NAFTA should be renegotiated.

But neither agree that the trade agreement has been what President Donald Trump called “a job killer.”

At the Center for Automotive Research’s Management Briefing Seminars July 31-Aug. 3 in Traverse City, Colin Bird, minister-counselor for trade and economic policy assigned to the Canadian Embassy, and Francisco Sandoval-Saqui, a Mexican trade official working in the Ministry of the Economy, laid out their country’s agendas for NAFTA trade talks that are scheduled to begin Aug. 16 in Washington.

Bird said Canada’s chief goal in the negotiations is to update the treaty so the United States, Canada and Mexico emerge with an improved framework that makes the three countries even more competitive with Europe and Asia.

 

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Richard Truett, “Representatives from Mexico, Canada…”, Plastics News, August 4, 2017

 


 

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