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Indian rubber product manufacturers are pinched by Chinese imports  

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Mumbai, India - Indian small and medium rubber product manufacturers are reeling from the sharp surge in imports and high GST rate of 28 percent on most products even as the Indian government protects the interest of large tire companies with an anti-dumping duty. The Directorate General of Anti-dumping & Allied Duties recently recommended levy of an anti-dumping duty of $245-452 (₹15,476-28,552) a metric ton on truck and bus radial tires imported from China. The rubber industry manufactures over 35,000 rubber products, which are used across sectors such as automobile, defense, healthcare, agriculture and other niche areas. Vikram Makar, senior vice president, All India Rubber Industries Association, said the growth in the industry has dwindled in the last three years and can be revived if proper policies are put in place. With the government opening up sourcing for most defense and infrastructure projects, it should ensure that the opportunity is not taken away by international companies, he said. Vinod Patkotwar, CEO, Crown Rubber Products, said the collation of data on imports is a herculean task as many of the rubber products are clubbed with other items during import. For instance, he said conveyor belts used in the mining sector are imported 12-15 percent cheaper from China along with other implements. Vishnu Bhimrajka, director, Polmann India, said the government has not been able to implement tariff barriers to restrict import due to lack of proper data. “I have received four calls in last three months from Chinese companies asking whether we are interested in a joint venture for setting up a unit in India as they feel the labor cost there is rising,” he added. Though the association feels that the required data can come only from the government, it has appointed two full-time officers to collate data and liaise with the government. - * Email

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Wacker expands technical center in Dubai and includes two new labs for polymers and silicones  

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Munich, Germany - Wacker is strengthening its presence in the Middle East and Africa (MEA) by expanding the service portfolio of its technical center in Dubai. The center of excellence located at the “Dubai Silicon Oasis” (DSO) technology park now also includes a dedicated laboratory for polymer dispersions needed as binders for adhesives and carpet applications. Further, a laboratory has been established and ISO-certified for developing and testing silicone elastomers for growing industries such as energy and mold making. The technical center Dubai now comprises five laboratories to support customers in the paints and coatings, construction, energy mold making, carpet and adhesives industries. With the expansion, Wacker is increasing its local expertise in applications technology, know-how transfer and service, thereby meeting its local customers’ needs for high-quality silicone and polymer products in the strongly growing markets of the MEA region. The region’s increasing growth potential, particularly with regard to carpet and energy applications, prompted the expansion of the local facility. “We are proud to say that our facility is the first in the region to offer both technical support and testing services for carpet manufactures, plus an ISO-certified silicones lab for high-quality, energy and mold making applications,” explained Cyril Cisinski, managing director, Wacker Chemicals Middle East. “The expanded facility will strengthen our position as one of the leading silicones and polymers manufacturers in (the) Middle East and Africa. With our extended lab facilities, we are adopting the international standard to local needs and conditions. Along with our sustainable and innovative solutions, we are offering our customers and partners in the region considerable added value.” The focus of the new polymers lab is on providing technical support for formulations with vinyl acetate-ethylene copolymer (VAE) dispersions to meet the growing local demands of customers in the carpet and adhesives industries. VAE dispersions of the Vinnapas brand are increasingly being used in place of traditional latexes as binders for bonding carpet backing, as well as for high-quality wood glue and water-based flooring adhesives. The upgraded lab for silicones elastomers caters to the needs of customers of the energy, mold making and automotive industries. Due to their unique set of properties, silicone products are capable of meeting these industries’ ever more complex requirements better than other plastics. Both new labs are equipped with cutting-edge instrumentation and enable numerous tests with regard to locally available raw materials, climatic and environmental conditions, and regional requirements. The silicones lab has further been certified according to the ISO 17025 standard. - * Email

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McLube

Clariant and Huntsman continue towards merger after second regulatory review  

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Muttenz, Germany - Clariant AG announces progress towards satisfying the regulatory approval condition to closing its merger of equals with Huntsman Corporation. The United States Federal Trade Commission, which reviews the antitrust implications of certain business combinations, late yesterday delivered a second request for information to the parties relating to just two products, sodium isethionate, used in personal care products like soap and shampoos, and a polyetheramine product used in certain construction and additive/paint and ink applications. These products accounted for less than $24 million in total revenues of each of the two companies in the United States in 2016, and Clariant is confident that the parties will be able to satisfy any FTC concerns on a timeline consistent with the merger, which Clariant continues to expect to close around year-end. The regulatory clearance process continues to move forward in other jurisdictions as well and Clariant continues to move forward on this timeline. - * Email

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Evonik increases prices for Vestanat and Vestagon products  

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Essen, Germany - Evonik raises the prices for its aliphatic diisocyanates and derivatives, offered under the brand names Vestanat and Vestagon up to 10 percent on a global basis with immediate effect. All existing contracts will be honored. After many years of stable prices the price increase has become unavoidable to compensate higher costs for personnel, maintenance, regulatory affairs and logistics. This adjustment will enable the business line of crosslinkers to continue to provide to its customers a superior quality, excellent service with special focus on supply reliability and the broadest portfolio of isophorone based solutions in the industry. - * Email

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Bridgestone named to two new ESG indexes  

Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Tokyo, Japan - Bridgestone Corporation announced it has been named to two new Environment, Society and Governance (ESG) indexes developed by MSCI, the MSCI Japan ESG Select Leaders Index and the MSCI Japan Empowering Women Index (WIN). Bridgestone was among companies recognized for strong commitments to Corporate Social Responsibility. These indexes are based on the MSCI Japan IMI Top 500 Index, a parent index, which includes large, mid and small-cap securities in the Japanese markets. The MSCI Japan ESG Select Leaders Index is designed to highlight companies with strong ESG performance. As of June 2017, 251 companies have been included in the index. The MSCI Japan Empowering Women Index is designed to recognize companies that exhibit a commitment to promoting and maintaining the empowerment of women among their workforce. As of June 2017, 212 companies have been included in the index. These represent two of three indexes that the Government Pension Investment Fund, Japan (GPIF)*2, one of the world’s largest pension funds, has selected as benchmarks for their ESG investment strategy. Bridgestone has also been included in the following sustainability/ESG indexes: Dow Jones Sustainability World Index(DJSI World; Dow Jones Sustainability Asia Pacific Index(DJSI Asia Pacific. Founded on its mission of "Serving Society with Superior Quality," the Bridgestone Group recognizes there is important business value in contributing to the development of society. As a global leader in the tire and rubber industries, Bridgestone aims for sustainable growth as a company that contributes to the creation of a sustainable society, while embracing our responsibility to future generations. In March, Bridgestone unveiled a refined global CSR commitment, “Our Way to Serve,” centered around three priority areas: Mobility, People and Environment. The new commitment builds upon a decade of progress and learning via Bridgestone’s initial CSR program. “Our Way to Serve” reflects the company’s longstanding philosophy of Serving Society with Superior Quality and a recognition that the best companies not only perform for their stakeholders, but also contribute to a better world. - * Email

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