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Chemicals & Pharmaceuticals News

Macroeconomic factors dampen Sasol’s year-to-date performance

By: Marleny Arnoldi     23rd April 2024 NYSE- and JSE-listed petrochemicals company Sasol says its energy business benefitted from higher basic fuel prices, as well as improved refining margins towards the end of the nine months ended March 31, which helped to offset operational headwinds at the group’s mining and Secunda operations.... 

Decarbonised iron production possible using sodium, company says

By: Darren Parker     19th April 2024 A new process being pioneered by energy companies such as Israel-based Helios and Netherlands-based Alkalium proposes the use of sodium metal rather than coal or hydrogen to refine iron-ore into direct reduced iron (DRI). Traditionally, iron is beneficiated by mixing iron-ore fines with coal. The... 

direct reduced iron pellets

Fog fluid product highlighted to prevent corrosion

19th April 2024 Global corrosion protection company Cortec Corporation highlights that its CorroLogic VpCI-339 fogging fluid is fast, effective and convenient in addressing the challenges of void and corrosion in equipment, piping and structures. This fogging fluid protects void spaces, complex internal... 

An image of industrial equipment
INDUSTRIAL PRESERVATION Cortec Corporation asserts that the latest iteration of its fogging fluid is well-equipped to address the challenge of corrosion in industrial equipment

South Africa recalls J&J's cough syrup sold in six African nations after suspected toxicity 

By: Reuters     15th April 2024 South Africa's health regulator said on Saturday it is recalling batches of Johnson & Johnson's children's cough syrup after detection of high levels of diethylene glycol. The affected batches were sold in South Africa, Eswatini, Rwanda, Kenya, Tanzania and Nigeria, the statement added. 

Nigeria recalls J&J children's cough syrup over toxic substance

By: Reuters     11th April 2024 Nigeria's health regulator is recalling a batch of Johnson & Johnson children's cough syrup after finding an unacceptably high level of a potentially fatal toxic substance, it said on Wednesday. Laboratory tests on Benylin Paediatric showed a high level of diethylene glycol, which has been linked... 

Varsity, private firm in partnership to develop protocol for production of radiopharmaceuticals

By: Irma Venter     29th March 2024 Stellenbosch University (SU) and high-tech company Enlightened Isotopes, a subsidiary of ASP Isotopes, have entered into an R8.5-million research partnership to develop a protocol for the separation of the ytterbium-176 isotope, to be used as a radiopharmaceutical in cancer therapy. Worldwide,... 

Companies unveil Kelvin power station carbon capture pilot project 

By: Schalk Burger     22nd March 2024 The 600 MW coal-fired Kelvin power station, in Isando, Ekurhuleni, has installed a 300 m3/h flue gas emissions capturing pilot project, which removes carbon dioxide (CO₂), nitrogen oxides and sulphur oxides to make sulphuric acid, ammonium sulphate and ammonium bicarbonate (ABC) crystals. These... 

The carbon capture pilot plant at the Kelvin power station
The carbon capture pilot plant at the Kelvin power station

Industry body condemns fuel adulteration

15th March 2024 Industry body the South African Petroleum Industry Association (Sapia) has affirmed in a statement released in January that it condemns the adulteration of diesel with illuminating paraffin. It added that Sapia members have zero-tolerance policies towards fuel adulteration to ensure that quality... 

Fuel pumps being held by a mans hand
FILL 'ER UP The illegal adulteration of diesel fuel by adding paraffin seams to be on the incline

Methanol surge expected to continue

15th March 2024 In recent years, the demand for methanol has witnessed a significant surge, particularly within the marine and construction industries, states analytical reportage company Persistence Market Research. The observation of this upward trend prompted Persistence Market Research to conduct a... 

a glass bottle with clear methanol inside and a sticker on with the chemical compound breakdown on the front
MAKING METHNOL Methanol is used as a feedstock for the synthesis of numerous chemicals, including formaldehyde, acetic acid and methyl tertiary-butyl ether

Probiotic-based cleaning products now available

15th March 2024 In contributing to a healthier environment, biological cleaning solutions producer Bionetix International, a division of environmentally responsible corrosion control technologies developer Cortec, offers its new probiotic-based cleaning solutions which are environment-friendly alternatives to... 

A range of bottles filled with various colour liquids used for cleaning
A PRO AT CLEANING The new probiotic-based cleaning agents offer a more environmentally friendly solution than chemicals

White biotechnology solutions highlighted

15th March 2024 Market intelligence specialists IDTechEx reported in February that handbags made of mushroom leather and biodegradable foodware are two examples of how white biotechnology can produce functional products that look good. White biotechnology uses enzymes and microorganisms to produce value-added... 

Mushrooms next to two manufactured leather rounds
SO MUSHROOM FOR DEVELOPMENT The development of leather form mushrooms and other white biotechnologies bodes well for a greener textile future

Biobased plastics launched to transform auto sector

15th March 2024 A consortium led by sustainable technology innovator Sonichem has been granted nearly R14.6-million in funding from UK government agency Innovate UK’s 'Resource efficiency for materials and manufacturing' (REforMM) programme. The funding will accelerate the development of the proprietary Sonichem... 

An info graphic Car with Green parts manufactured from petrochemicals
GOOD CARMA The production of renewable, cost-effective alternatives to petrochemicals commonly used in the production of plastics, resins and composites within the automotive industry

Programme targets underprivileged youth

By: Halima Frost     15th March 2024 Commercial fuels, lubricants and oils retailer Shell Downstream South Africa has invested over R30-million in its science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM) bursary programme to help develop less fortunate youth in South Africa. STEM subjects are more than gateways to “great,... 

A picture of Shell Downstream South Africa learning and development manager Kefilwe Maseko stood in front of a Shell banner by a school blackboard
KEFILWE MASEKO For over ten years, the programme has given young individuals from disadvantaged or underprivileged backgrounds who have met the relevant academic requirements the opportunity to further their studies in tertiary institutions.

Stellenbosch laser physicists to develop protocol for production of high-tech radiopharmaceuticals

By: Irma Venter     13th March 2024 Stellenbosch University (SU) and high-tech company Enlightened Isotopes, a subsidiary of ASP Isotopes, have entered into an R8.5-million research partnership to develop a protocol for the separation of the ytterbium-176 isotope, to be used as a radiopharmaceutical in cancer therapy. Worldwide,... 

Image of the SU's Pieter Neethling and Christine Steenkamp
Photo by Stefan Els
Pieter Neethling and Christine Steenkamp/Photo by Stefan Els

Breaking down barriers for women in manufacturing

By: Shannon de Ryhove     13th March 2024 South Africa’s manufacturing industry is a domain that is often perceived as male-dominated, where women face unique challenges entering and thriving. However, industrial and specialty gas manufacturer and supplier Air Products aims to confront the barriers that women encounter in the... 

Chieta announces new green hydrogen qualifications, skills programmes

By: Darren Parker     4th March 2024 The Chemical Industries Training and Education Authority (Chieta) will be registering new qualifications on green hydrogen and offering specialised skills programmes relevant to growing the green hydrogen economy. “South Africans will get opportunities for specialised training that will equip... 

Chieta CE Yershen Pillay
Chieta CE Yershen Pillay

Cabinet and business praise Sasol and TFR for ‘first-of-its-kind’ partnership to repair 128 ammonia tankers 

By: Terence Creamer     29th February 2024 Both Cabinet and organised business have lauded the five-year public-private partnership agreement between Sasol and Transnet Freight Rail (TFR), under which the energy and chemicals group will fund the maintenance and repair of a dedicated fleet of 128 ammonia tankers. In a statement following... 

Acting TFR CEO Russell Baatjies and Sasol CEO Fleetwood Grobler (seated at centre) sign the agreement, in front of their respective teams, including (standing from left to right) Mario Klaasen, Loven Naidoo, Bonginkosi Mabaso, Pierre Koch, Pierre Taljaard and Kevin Govender, with Ayanda Mokhesi seated to the left of Baatjies and Brad Griffith and David Mokomela seated to Grobler’s right
Acting TFR CEO Russell Baatjies and Sasol CEO Fleetwood Grobler (seated at centre) sign the agreement, in front of their respective teams, including (standing from left to right) Mario Klaasen, Loven Naidoo, Bonginkosi Mabaso, Pierre Koch, Pierre Taljaard and Kevin Govender, with Ayanda Mokhesi seated to the left of Baatjies and Brad Griffith and David Mokomela seated to Grobler’s right

Sasol to fund TFR’s maintenance of 128 ammonia tankers

By: Terence Creamer     28th February 2024 JSE-listed Sasol has signed a five-year public-private partnership (PPP) agreement with Transnet Freight Rail (TFR), under which the energy and chemicals group will fund the maintenance and repair of a dedicated fleet of 128 ammonia tankers that service Sasol’s Secunda and Sasolburg facilities.... 

TFR acting CEO Russell Baatjies and Sasol CEO Fleetwood Grobler sign the agreement, alongside their respective teams
TFR acting CEO Russell Baatjies and Sasol CEO Fleetwood Grobler sign the agreement, alongside their respective teams

Amid disposals, AECI aligns internationalisation strategy to regions geared for rapid critical minerals growth 

By: Terence Creamer     28th February 2024 JSE-listed AECI, which is undergoing far-reaching restructuring to re-focus on its core mining and chemicals businesses and reduce debt, reports strong initial interest in the six noncore companies that it plans to dispose of over the coming 18 months for combined proceeds of about R2.5-billion.... 

AECI CEO Holger Riemensperger
AECI CEO Holger Riemensperger

Sasol prioritising coal de-stoning investment as it seeks to allay fears over big Secunda output dip   

By: Terence Creamer     26th February 2024 Energy and chemicals group Sasol has moved to address investor concerns that its yearly production at Secunda will need to fall to only 6.7-million tons for it to meet its goal of reducing the carbon-heavy Mpumalanga complex’s greenhouse gas emissions by 30% by 2030. Delivering his final results... 

Sasol CEO Fleetwood Grobler
Sasol CEO Fleetwood Grobler on the medium-term interventions being taken to ensure that Secunda's production profile remains above 6.7-million tons, while meeting 30% decarbonisation commitment. Recorded: 26.02.2024 Editing: Shadwyn Dickinson

Sasol reports 34% decline in half-year profit

By: Reuters     26th February 2024 Sasol reported on Monday a decline of 34% in half-year profit, mainly due to weaker oil and petrochemical prices as well as higher costs. Sasol, the world's biggest producer of fuels and chemicals from coal and gas, said its headline earnings per share (HEPS) – the most common profit measure in... 

A Sasol sign at its Secunda plant

Adcock reports resilient performance despite challenging market conditions

By: Sabrina Jardim     21st February 2024 JSE-listed pharmaceuticals manufacturer Adcock Ingram says it has delivered a “resilient performance” for the six months ended December 31, 2023, despite challenges facing consumers, such as high interest rates, exchange rate depreciation, high inflation and loadshedding, which, consequently,... 

Manufacturer introduces ‘evolved’ engine oil

By: Trent Roebeck     16th February 2024 As a successor to its TITAN CARGO MAXX 10W40 performance engine oil, lubricant manufacturer FUCHS Lubricants South Africa now offers the TITAN CARGO MAXX II performance engine oil, which also has a viscosity grade of 10W40, as certified by the Society of Automotive Engineers. TITAN CARGO MAXX II... 

An image of FUCHS Local Segment Lead Andy Weddell
ANDY WEDDELL FUCHS Local Segment Lead Andy Weddell asserts that the TITAN CARGO MAXX II will reduce harmful emissions, increase fuel economy and extend drain intervals

South Africa urged to dedicate 30% of healthcare public procurement to local manufacturers

By: Schalk Burger     13th February 2024 To build capacity and expand investment in South Africa’s pharmaceutical and healthcare products manufacturing sector, the country should ringfence 30% of public procurement for local manufacturers, and allocate 1% of gross domestic product to research, intellectual property development and... 

Sasol warns of lacklustre interim results amid volatile macroeconomic environment

By: Darren Parker     9th February 2024 Energy and chemicals company Sasol has attributed its “underwhelming” upcoming financial results for the six months ended December 31, 2023, to continued volatility in the macroeconomic environment, with weaker oil and petrochemical prices, unstable product demand and ongoing inflationary cost... 

Sasol Secunda

Transformed AECI to go big globally

By: Rebecca Campbell     7th February 2024 JSE-listed South African multinational AECI aims to be the global number three company in its core market segment of mining explosives and mining chemicals, by 2030. Of the company’s business, 80% is already outside South Africa and 30% is outside Africa, CEO Holger Riemensperger emphasises to... 

AECI CEO Holger Riemensperger
AECI CEO Holger Riemensperger

CSIR, GIZ collaborate on building skills for vaccine manufacturing in South Africa

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     26th January 2024 The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) has partnered with the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) on a human capacity development initiative in South Africa that will focus on developing skills in good manufacturing practices (GMPs) for... 

An image showing the CSIR and GIZ partnership
The Council for Scientific and Industrial Research has partnered with the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit

Sasol posts firm production performance despite market challenges

By: Marleny Arnoldi     25th January 2024 Petrochemicals giant Sasol says its results and performance for the first half of the 2024 financial year – the six months to December 31 – continued to be impacted on by a volatile macroeconomic environment, including weak oil and petrochemical prices, unstable product demand and inflationary... 

Germany’s KfW donates equipment to South Africa’s public healthcare system

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     24th January 2024 Minister of Health Dr Joe Phaahla will, on January 25, preside over an official handover ceremony of mobile health clinics, cold chain and information technology equipment from the German Development Bank (KfW) to support efforts by the South African government to strengthen the public health... 

An image of ​​​​​​​Minister of Health Dr Joe Phaahla 
​​​​​​​Minister of Health Dr Joe Phaahla 

AECI outlines new strategy as it celebrates its centenary

By: Sabrina Jardim     23rd January 2024 JSE-listed AECI celebrates its centenary this year, with Group CEO Holger Riemensperger attributing the company’s success to its solution-focussed value proposition and dedication from its workforce. Riemensperger describes AECI as a “remarkable success story founded on unique customer... 

An image depicting AECI Group CEO Holger Riemensperger
AECI Group CEO Holger Riemensperger

AECI reorganises executive leadership team

By: Donna Slater     20th December 2023 Diversified group AECI reorganised the structure of its executive leadership team, on December 20, to be more aligned to a corporate business that will enable the delivery of its strategic ambition to double the profitability of its core mining and chemicals business by 2026. This is also in... 

Sasol says investors critical of its climate record have ‘flawed understanding’

By: Bloomberg     14th December 2023 Sasol has hit back at investors who said they would reject its climate-change report at an annual general meeting last month, before it was abandoned because of a protest. The petrochemicals company accused the investors, which included Ninety One and Old Mutual Investment Group, of misconstruing... 

A Sasol sign in front of its Secunda complex

Second iteration of just transition project framework completed

By: Schalk Burger     8th December 2023 Nonprofit economic research institution Trade and Industrial Policy Strategies (TIPS) has developed the second iteration of its framework to identify and measure just transition projects in South Africa, and will publish it in March. The first iteration of the framework was used to test... 

TIPS research fellow Sandy Lowitt.
TIPS research fellow Sandy Lowitt.

Partnership enables local manufacture of vehicle sealing, acoustic solutions

8th December 2023 Chemicals and consumer goods company Henkel South Africa is partnering with Hammanskraal-based rubber and plastics manufacturer Hudson Rubber, in Gauteng, to locally fabricate Henkel’s vehicle rubber sealing and acoustic solutions for original-equipment manufacturer (OEM) vehicle panel... 

An image depicting Henkel and Hudson Rubber signing the agreement at the recent NAACAM Show 2023.
SEALING THE DEAL Henkel and Hudson Rubber signing the agreement at the recent NAACAM Show 2023. From left: Sharlene Brits, Henkel South Africa key account manager; Paul Bergset, Henkel South Africa head of sales IND solutions and durable goods; Alida van Bruggen, Hudson Rubber director; and Stoney Steenkamp, Hudson Rubber MD.

Omnia's Gobalsamy joins the International Fertilizer Association board

By: Creamer Media Reporter      4th December 2023 Global complementary chemical services company Omnia Group's CEO Seelan Gobalsamy has been appointed to the board of the International Fertilizer Association (IFA). The IFA has over 450 members spanning 78 countries. Driven by a mission to promote responsible and efficient production,... 

Omnia CEO Seelan Gobalsamy
Omnia CEO Seelan Gobalsamy

Sasol, Air Liquide conclude corporate PPA with Mainstream for 97.5 MW solar project

By: Terence Creamer     21st November 2023 A 97.5 MW solar photovoltaic project will be constructed in the Free State following the signing of a 20-year corporate power purchase agreement (PPA) between Mainstream Renewable Power and industrial groups Sasol and Air Liquide. The project forms part of a joint initiative by Sasol and Air... 

Solar panels

Omnia weathers challenges to maintain strong interim financial position

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     20th November 2023 JSE-listed Omnia Holdings’ operations and capital were managed effectively against a backdrop of complex market dynamics, resulting in a strong cash position and balance sheet for the six months ended September 30, CEO Seelan Gobalsamy says. The group maintained a disciplined focus on costs,... 

Omnia CEO Seelan Gobalsamy
Photo by Creamer Media's Marleny Arnoldi
Omnia CEO Seelan Gobalsamy
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