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  “Respublika Tatarstan” (“Republic of Tatarstan”), Irina Demina  

Petrochemical companies: from monomers to polymers …and to the ecologically clean fuel

  Global financial and economic crisis did not interfere in the plans of "Nizhnekamskneftekhim" to put into operation the next scheduled production of plastics. In the beginning of February, OJSC “Nizhnekamskneftekhim” produced the first batch of commercial polyethylene. Thereby within the framework of advanced program of development OJSC “Nizhnekamskneftekhim” completed the program for organization of manufacture of new necessary products for the Republic of Tatarstan such as polystyrene, polypropylene and polyethylene.
Yesterday, the new plant was visited by President Mintimer Shaimiev, First Vice Prime Minister Ravil Muratov, and the Heads of the Ministries, governmental departments and large Republican companies. They visited, as well, the Refinery of OJSC “TAIF-NK” and participated in the ceremony of commissioning of the complex of facilities for production of additives being necessary for production of quality motor gasoline.
From the history of our plastics
General Director of OJSC "Nizhnekamskneftekhim" Vladimir Busygin reminded the guests that the start for realization of the project of plastics production on OJSC "Nizhnekamskneftekhim" was given in July 2003 with the commissioning of the first line of polystyrene production plant with annual volume of production of 50 thousand tons. The second line has been commissioned in two years, the third – in August 2008 (yesterday, Mintimer Shaimiev paid a visit to this production, as well). As a result, the production capacity was increased up to 200 thousand tons annually and OJSC "Nizhnekamskneftekhim" became the largest producer of polystyrenes in our country. Today, over 70% of Russian polystyrene plastics are produced here, to be used for production of toys, houseware, electronic appliances and office appliances body, medical and laboratory equipment, packaging for electronic accessorizes etc.

As Vladimir Busygin said, in last November the Company had produced the anniversary 500 thousandth ton of polystyrene. In total, the Company developed 26 grades of this plastic with high demand on the international market: in addition to Russia, the production is exported to Poland, China, Turkey, Slovenia, Belarus, and Ukraine.

This petrochemical Goliath from Nizhnekamsk never stopped developing. In October 2006, the polypropylene plant was commissioned with the capacity of 180 thousand tpa where the production of homopolymers, copolymers, and termopolymers was launched. The technology applied by OJSC "Nizhnekamskneftekhim" severely differs from the similar processes applied by other Russian companies. Thus, the energy share constitutes only 2.3% in the cost of our polypropylene that is especially profitable today, taking into account the increase in energy rates.

At present, the petrochemical companies of Nizhnekamsk own the licenses for production of more that 80 grades of polypropylene with some grades produced nowhere else in Russia except here. As for today, over 360 thousand tons of plastics of European quality were produced here. About 60 percent of Russian polypropylene is produced by OJSC "Nizhnekamskneftekhim". Because of the high quality of its production, this Company from Tatarstan drove out the domestic market such serious competitors as Basell, Dow and Borealis.

Polypropylene is used in production of household appliances and auto components, packaging, containers, disposable tableware and many other necessary things. The main consumers of this type of plastic are the Russian companies. Up to 30 percent of production is sold for export – to Lithuania, Latvia, Turkey, Belarus, Finland, Kazakhstan, China, and Ukraine.

Again “for the first time in Russia”
With the start-up of new polyethylene plant, OJSC "Nizhnekamskneftekhim" successfully completed the realization of the program for production of polymers from monomers. Thus, the Company fulfilled the task of the President of the Republic of Tatarstan to maximally increase the deeper processing of petrochemicals, and, hence, to substantially increase the added value remaining in the Republic.

Thereby within the framework of advanced program of development OJSC “Nizhnekamskneftekhim” completed the program for organization of manufacture of new products for the Republic of Tatarstan such as polystyrene, polypropylene and polyethylene.

The head of the Republic got acquainted with the technological process of polyethylene production. The process of polyethylene production using the Spherilene gas-phase technology was developed on the basis of the project of process Licensor – LyondellBasell (Italy), and it was implemented on the equipment provided by Technimont (Italy). Nizhnekamsk plant is intended for manufacture of granular polyethylene of black and natural colors (low, medium, and high density), and certain grades have never been produced in the Russian Federation before. Besides, the implemented polymerization system has no analogy in domestic practice.

This plant is unique not only in terms of the product mix but also from the point of view of profitability: the share of power generation sector in the cost price of Nizhnekamsk polyethylene constitutes only 3.5%. Therefore, proceeding from the ratio of the cost price and quality Nizhnekamsk polyethylene could successfully compete with foreign equivalent products in the Russian market.

Polyethylene is the plastic of the highest demand. The primary consumers of this type of plastic are agriculture, light industry, food industry, chemical industry and medicine, construction and machine industry etc. Polyethylene is used for production of pipes for various applications, containers, furniture, fibers and threads for making carpets, wallpapers, fabrics, cotton-like fibers, cotton wool, filters, films for packing of food articles and technical items, automobile items (bumpers, instrument panels), medical-care items (syringes, clothes for medical staff) etc.

Mintimer Shaimiev highly appraised the new facility and congratulated its staff with their achievement having said: "During the Soviet Union era, whole country participated in the construction of OJSC "Kazanorgsintez". And you managed to establish a new large-scale production by yourselves within the 24 months period with the capacity of 230 thousand tons of polymer annually with the quality having no analogues in Russia. Well done!"
Vladimir Busygin said that there had been received five thousand tons of polyethylene from the moment of start-up of polyethylene production line (i.e. from the current 3rd February). As of today the Company's total capacity of plastics production reached 600 thousand tons a year. Along with implementation of this program, a goal-oriented work is realized by the Company to master new rubber grades. While in 1999 the company produced only 2 types of rubber, now 7 grades are produced, used for production of tires and unique plastics. At present the total capacity of rubber production at OJSC Nizhnekamskneftekhim is over 550 thousand tons a year.

Ecologically clean project

In OJSC “TAIF-NK” the President and the accompanying persons listened to the presentation made by the Company’s General Director Alexander Babynin about the unique character of two commissioned units for production of additives (methyl-tertiary-butyl-ether (MTBE) and tertiary-amyl ether), used in production of motor gasoline. Mr. Babynin explained that these additives are used to ensure the reduction of cancer-causing benzene, aromatic hydrocarbons and other hazardous substances and to reduce significantly the level of emissions in the deeply desulphurized motor gasoline. Therefore, OJSC "TAIF-NK" tends to realize the produced high-quality motor fuel (that meets the corresponding requirements of Euro-4 standard) specifically on the market of Tatarstan. As the Company’s General Director explained, “last year, TAIF produced 35 percents of all gasoline produced in the Republic, while there are perspective to improve this share up to 60 percents as a minimum.

According to the data from the General Director of “TAIF” Group of Companies Albetr Shigaboutdinov, starting from 2000, “TAIF” has invested over RUB 40 billion in the development and technical re-equipment of its Refinery, thus, increasing the depth of refining of “heavy” crude oil from 37 to 73.5%. As of today, the TAIF Refinery is the only Refinery among 27 similar Russian plants that can produce completely all types of motor fuel.

In 2008, the Refinery of OJSC “TAIF-NK” became the laureate of the premium “Best ecological project of the year in the Russian Federation” in the nomination “Ecological efficiency of the economy”. The Company was selected of 700 other participants because of the investments made and the increase in volumes of production.

Mintimer Shaimiev during his address to the employees of petrochemical companies said:
“- Today, I was very satisfied with seen on your companies. You put into operation new facilities during the global financial and economic crisis. This is very important for your companies and Nizhnekamsk, as well as for the Republican economy. I would like to extend my appreciation to you for this, personally and on behalf of the government of Tatarstan.
President, in his address to the Head of municipal district "Nizhnekamsk municipal district" Aidar Metshin, General Director of OJSC “Nizhnekamskneftekhim” Vladimir Busygin and other heads of the industrial companies, excited them to do their best to save all job positions, to keep the same level of salary during current difficult time, apply all existing ways of social support.
- The lives of hundreds of thousands of people are connected with your companies”, reminded to the participants Mintimer Shaimiev. “In due course time, we were right to consider the petrochemicals sector to be one of the priority sector of the Republican economy. Before that, we depended heavily on the supplies from the Ukrainian Kremenchugskij Refinery. And, now you see what is happening in Ukraine. What we are doing now is the expansion of our own oil refining, the construction of another complex of refining and petrochemical plants in Nizhnekamsk (“Taneco”) with the initial projected capacity of seven million tons per year. But it was decided to increase the capacity up to 20 million tons. In few years, all volumes of crude produced in Tatarstan would be processed by our own facilities inside the Republic.

The same day, the President checked out the progress of construction of "Taneco", visited the OJSC “Tatlesstroy” workshop for production of polymeric products intended for the use of automotive industry and machinery-production industry.
In his working visit Mintimer Shaimiev was accompanied by State Adviser of the President for subsurface resources management, oil and gas Irina Larochkina, Minister of economy Marat Safiullin, Minister of Industry and Trade Alexander Kogogin, Minister of Construction, Architecture, and Housing Marat Khusnullin.


80, Pushkina Str.,
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