DSM selling EP elastomers

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product of the OECD area could rise by 25% or an average rate of 4.6% a year to about $1560 billion in 1970. Real income per head would increase to $2260, some 40% higher than in 1960. OECD's 50% growth target would then be considerably bettered. U.K. adds instrument tariffs Britain's Board of Trade has lopped off tariff exemptions on a $30 million flow of scientific instruments imported into the U.K. Previously, British pur-chasers of a wide range of instruments from abroad were granted duty relief if no British-made instruments could meet the specifications they required. During the fiscal year ended last March, about a fifth of the $174 mil-lion worth of scientific instruments imported for commercial use were duty-free under this arrangement. In-struments imported for noncommer-cial research and education, which will continue to enter the U.K. duty-free, added up to another $34 million last year. Cost to buyers of the analytical in-struments affected will move sharply upward. Import duty on spectropho-tometers, for example, is 40%. Gas chromatographs carry a 25% duty. (A 10% surcharge, currently added to these rates, is scheduled to expire Nov. 30.) The Board of Trade's suspension of duty relief will bear largely on re-search instruments. Perkin-Elmer, Ltd., produces general-purpose gas chromatographs in England and im-ports more specialized industrial re-search instruments. Varian Aero-graph (U.K.), Ltd., which does no manufacturing in Britain, has been im-porting virtually all of its gas chro-matographs duty-free to buyers. These gas chromatographs, Varian points out, include detector systems, oven sizes, and other features specifi-cally required by buyers and not yet available in British-made systems. About half of them go to industrial users now facing import duties. Production parts and components, imported for use by British instrument makers for lack of domestic equiva-lents, have also been excused from duty charges under Board of Trade concessions. The Board is dealing with each of these arrangements sep-arately, with a view toward eventual suspension, and won't consider further applications. This move may have less impact in view of the growing list of made-in-Britain components avail-able. Unicam Instruments, Ltd., which makes a range of spectropho-tometers in the U.K., had to import parts such as infrared-range filters un-til about a year ago. Now, however, the company says its production needs can be met almost completely from domestic sources. F&M Scientific, which also has no U.K. manufacturing facilities, feels that adding tariff charges to its line of gas-liquid chromatographs could mean the difference between sale and no sale to more than half of its British customers. Hewlett-Packard Scotland, Ltd., another subsidiary of F&M's par-ent firm, has just opened a plant near Edinburgh. Production lines there for F&M's use have been held out as a possibility in several years' time. The changed tariff situation may hasten a decision. Dow wants to import naphtha Dow Chemical has applied to the De-partment of Interior for a license to import 10,000 barrels per day of naphtha for its Bay City, Mich., petro-chemical operation. The plant is in a new foreign trade subzone approved a month ago by the Department of Commerce. A license is needed since, last December, President Johnson spelled out that any oil brought into foreign trade zones is under oil import quota restrictions. The company says that it needs for-eign naphtha, which offers cost ad-vantages over the Michigan and Canadian crude oil and condensate now used at Bay City, to run the plant economically. Earlier this year, Dow shut down its polyethylene plant at the site, blaming the high cost of feed-stocks. The company claims that Bay City faces "severe and aggravated local circumstances," being far from major domestic feedstock sources and largely cut off from foreign sources by oil import restrictions. Dow already has two small oil im-port quotas for 1966. One, of 1286 barrels per day, is based on its refinery at Bay City. The other, 2485 barrels per day, is based on the company's na-tionwide petrochemical output. This oil is not now used at Bay City. As it is not enough to supply the plant com-pletely, Dow, like some other petro-chemical producers, finds it more prof-itable to trade its present quotas for other petroleum products. If approved, the Dow application could trigger another round in the continuous fight among petrochemical and oil companies over who-gets-what when it comes to importing oil. Other petrochemical companies would likely seek similar dispensations. Union Carbide applied two years ago for a subzone at the petrochemical complex it is building at Taft, La. This appli-cation is still pending. Monsanto also has said it would apply for a zone if another petrochemical maker got one. Oil companies see the import of oil into foreign trade zones as a threat on two fronts. If Dow gets a quota which is in addition to already author-ized imports, the oil industry will view it as a loophole in the oil import quota programa program which has been in operation since 1959 to protect domestic crude producers from cheap foreign oil. On the other hand, if any quota that Dow gets comes out of present imports, it will mean a reduc-tion in the oil companies' own quotas. DSM selling EP elastomers Dutch State Mines, after a three-year pilot-plant program, is launching its ethylene-propylene elastomers in the European market. Next week at Utrecht the firm will show sample productsamong them tires containing an ethylene-propylene terpolymerat the Fourth International Plastics Fair. A 26 million pound-a-year plant at DSM's Beek, Limburg, chemical works will begin making both ethyl-ene-propylene copolymer (EP) and ethylene-propylene terpolymer (EPT) in the latter half of next year. Mean-while, DSM will offer its pilot-plant outputseveral hundred tonson the market. Until now, all of its produc-tion has gone into application studies by DSM itself and a number of rub-ber-processing firms. DSM makes EP under a Ziegler license and EPT under a Dunlop Rub-ber Co. license along with Ziegler catalyst technology. This EPT route uses a bridged-ring polyunsaturated hydrocarbon such as dicyclopenta-diene as the third monomer. The de-sign of DSM's production plant, based on its own development work, is the subject of several patent applica-tions. Other West European firms have eyed the EPT market but haven't com-mitted themselves further. Farb-werke Hoechst, in cooperation with Chemische Werke Huels, announced plans last year for a 26 million pound-a-year plant near Frankfurt, but no decision has been made by the West German company to put the plans into action. In Italy, Montecatini Edison's wholly owned subsidiary, Montesud Petrochimica, has a 13 million pound-a-year EP plant at Ferrara. Montesud Petrochimica is the new name for Monteshell Petrochimica, the former joint operation by Montecatini Edison and the Royal Dutch/Shell group. Last month, the two owners of Monte-shell disclosed that Montecatini Edi-son would buy out its partner's share of the venture (C&EN, Sept. 26, page 22) . 30 C&EN OCT. 10, 1966 DSM selling EP elastomers


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