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Shell Strengthens Polyol Production Facility in Europe

Published on 2011-12-12. Author : SpecialChem

Shell Chemicals has completed a project to strengthen the flexibility of its polyol production facility in Europe. A direct result of this will be an immediate increase in CASE (coatings, adhesives, sealants and elastomers) polyol capacity from the site at Pernis in the Netherlands.

Modifications made to both the plant and process technology are enabling CASE-grade CARADOL polyols to be made on a continuous production line for the first time in Shell's history. This is providing a boost in capacity, designed to enable Shell's Propylene Oxide and Derivatives (PODer) business to respond quickly to increasing demand from customers across Europe.

"We have been in the polyols business for over 50 years and intend to maintain our position as a leading supplier to the CASE sector," says Colin McKendrick, General Manager, Propylene Oxide and Derivatives (PODer), Shell Chemicals.

"Our customers are seeing higher demand for their CASE systems and we want to support their growth plans. By taking an innovative approach to our manufacturing we have been able to significantly boost our CASE production capacity within a very short time frame."

CASE polyols are used in a myriad of polyurethane (PU) applications across the automotive, construction and surfacing industries. The flexibility of CASE-based PU systems means they can be formulated to deliver tailored performance properties for specific end-uses.

"To achieve this increase in capacity we are making CASE polyols using our proprietary continuous technology," says McKendrick. "It's the same grade, just made in a more efficient way."

Utilising continuous technology avoids interruptions in production due to batch changes, and achieves higher overall plant throughput. The continuous process technology also imparts some beneficial properties to the polyol including less odour and lower levels of volatile organic compounds.

"This project is the latest in a series of projects implemented over the past decade to strengthen our core PODer manufacturing position," says Sean Clarry, Commercial Manager, Propylene Oxide and Derivatives Europe, Africa and Middle East.

"It means more product to meet the needs of both existing CARADOL polyols customers, as well as new ones that we haven't been able to support with the required quantities before."

About Shell Chemicals

With a collective multi-billion dollar turnover and major manufacturing facilities around the world, the companies that make up Shell Chemicals number among the world's largest petrochemical operations. The company's focus is on the production of bulk petrochemicals and their delivery to large industrial customers who, in turn, use them to make many of the essential materials of the modern world.

Forward Looking Statements

This press release contains forward-looking statements concerning the financial condition, results of operations and businesses of Royal Dutch Shell. All statements other than statements of historical fact are, or may be deemed to be, forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are statements of future expectations that are based on management's current expectations and assumptions and involve known and unknown risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results, performance or events to differ materially from those expressed or implied in these statements. Forward-looking statements include, among other things, statements concerning the potential exposure of Royal Dutch Shell to market risks and statements expressing management's expectations, beliefs, estimates, forecasts, projections and assumptions. These forward-looking statements are identified by their use of terms and phrases such as "anticipate", "believe", "could", "estimate", "expect", "intend", "may", "plan", "objectives", "outlook", "probably", "project", "will", "seek", "target", "risks", "goals", "should" and similar terms and phrases. There are a number of factors that could affect the future operations of Royal Dutch Shell and could cause those results to differ materially from those expressed in the forward-looking statements included in this press release, including (without limitation): (a) price fluctuations in crude oil and natural gas; (b) changes in demand for Shell's products; (c) currency fluctuations; (d) drilling and production results; (e) reserves estimates; (f) loss of market share and industry competition; (g) environmental and physical risks; (h) risks associated with the identification of suitable potential acquisition properties and targets, and successful negotiation and completion of such transactions; (i) the risk of doing business in developing countries and countries subject to international sanctions; (j) legislative, fiscal and regulatory developments including regulatory measures addressing climate change; (k) economic and financial market conditions in various countries and regions; (l) political risks, including the risks of expropriation and renegotiation of the terms of contracts with governmental entities, delays or advancements in the approval of projects and delays in the reimbursement for shared costs; and (m) changes in trading conditions. All forward-looking statements contained in this press release are expressly qualified in their entirety by the cautionary statements contained or referred to in this section. Readers should not place undue reliance on forward-looking statements. Additional factors that may affect future results are contained in Royal Dutch Shell's 20-F for the year ended December 31, 2010 (available at www.shell.com/investor - opens in new window and www.sec.gov - opens in new window). These factors also should be considered by the reader. Each forward-looking statement speaks only as of the date of this press release, December 2, 2011. Neither Royal Dutch Shell nor any of its subsidiaries undertake any obligation to publicly update or revise any forward-looking statement as a result of new information, future events or other information. In light of these risks, results could differ materially from those stated, implied or inferred from the forward-looking statements contained in this press release.

Source: Shell Chemicals

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