主な合成ゴム生産会社の能力  単位:千t/y        日本ゼオン FACT BOOK 2005

会社名 国名 能力 製品
Bayer AG U.S.A., Canada, Germany, France, Belgium 1,062 SBR BR EPDM IIR NBR CR
Goodyear Chemicals U.S.A. 717*1 SBR BR IR
ExxonMobil Chemical Company U.S.A., France, U.K. 515 EPDM IIR
Polimeri Europa S.r.l. (former EniChem SpA) Italy, U.K., France, U.S.A 723 SBR BR EPDM NBR CR SBC
JSR 日本 458 SBR BR IR EPDM NBR
Ameripol Synpol Corp.. U.S.A 431 SBR
日本ゼオン 日本、アメリカ、イギリス 414*2 SBR BR IR NBR
Dow Chemical Germany, Netherlands, France 247 SBR BR
Karbochem South Africa 315 SBR BR EPR
Korea Kumho Petrochemical Co. Korea 403 SBR BR NBR
Petroflex Brazil 360 SBR BR NBR TPR
DSM U.S.A., Netherlands 409 SBR EPDM NBR
Firestone Synthetic Rubber & Latex Co. U.S.A. 305 SBR BR
Dupont Dow Elastomers U.S.A., Netherlands 325 EPDM CR
Taiwan Synthetic Rubber Taiwan 210 SBR BR
Synthetic Rubber Corp. U.S.A. 160 BR

(Source: International Institute of Synthetic Rubber Producers)
*1 Including synthetic Latices
 (Latex)
*2 Based on the in-firm data

Kraton Performance Polymers Brings Poly-Isoprene Rubber Manufacturing to the U.S.


RubberWorld 2006/11/27

EU to fine butadiene, ESBR producers

Reuters reports that The European Commission will on Wednesday fine some companies involved in a cartel in the synthetic rubber industry for materials used to make tires and other products, a source close to the case said.
Involved in the case are
Bayer of Germany; Dow Chemical of the U.S. and some of its European subsidiaries; Eni of Italy and its subsidiary Sundial; Shell of the Netherlands and Britain; Kaucuk of the Czech Republic; and Poland-based Stomil.
The Commission, executive arm of the European Union, will rule that the companies agreed to fix prices of
butadiene rubber and emulsion styrene butadiene rubber, the source said on Friday. The Commission declined to comment.
Bayer told the Commission about the cartel and sought immunity, so may escape a fine.
In 2005, Bayer said
the investigation does not concern Bayer but we will cooperate with the authorities.
Also that year a spokesman for UniPetrol, which was Kaucuk
s majority owner, denied the accusations.
The companies have had an oral hearing in the case.


2006/11/29 BBC

EU orders fine for rubber cartel
Eni, which faces the largest fine, says it might appeal

The European Commission has fined five oil and chemical companies Euro519m ($682m) for price-fixing.
Italy's
Eni faces the largest fine, of 272m euros (£183m; $357m), while Royal Dutch Shell was fined 160.8m euros.
The EU imposed the fine after learning that five firms were fixing the price of synthetic rubber used for tyres.
The fine is the second largest the commission has imposed for a cartel. It came after Germany's
Bayer told EU lawmakers of the price-fixing.
The move gave Bayer immunity from any fine, which could have amounted to some 204m euros.

Repeat offenders
The fines for both Eni and Royal Dutch Shell were increased by 50% because they have previously committed similar offences.
The European Commission fined some of the region's top oil firms, including Shell and Total, for
fixing the price of bitumen in September.
Eni, which said the fine was "entirely disproportionate and unjustified", has said it might look making an appeal against the decision.
Other firms fined over the latest price-fixing scheme include
Dow Chemical, which has been ordered to pay 64.5m euros.
The figure was 40% below the original figure after Dow provided regulators with information in support of Bayer's findings.
Unipetrol, a Czech refining firm, has been told to pay 17.5m euros, while Polish firm Trade Stomil faces a 3.8m euro fine.

The largest fine imposed by the commission on a cartel came in 2001, after it ordered eight pharmaceutical firms to pay 790m euros for
fixing the price of vitamins.


Brussels, 29th November 2006

Competition: Commission fines producers and traders of synthetic rubber ? 519 million for price fixing cartel

The European Commission has fined five groups of companies a total of Euro 519 million for participating in a cartel to fix prices and share customers for certain types of synthetic rubber (Butadiene Rubber - BR and Emulsion Styrene Butadiene Rubber - ESBR), in violation of the EC Treatys ban on restrictive business practices (Article 81). Companies belonging to the groups Eni, Bayer, Shell, Dow, Unipetrol and Trade-Stomil operated the cartel from at least 1996 to 2002. Synthetic rubbers BR and ESBR are extensively used for the production of tyres as well as for the production of other consumer goods. The fines on ENI, Shell and Bayer were increased because these companies had already been found guilty of taking part in cartels (although Bayer does not have to pay its fine because it received full immunity for having been the first company to reveal the cartel to the Commission). The overall fine is the second highest imposed by the Commission in a cartel case, and brings the total amount of cartel fines imposed this year to Euro1.843 billion - a new annual record for the Commission.

Competition Commissioner Neelie Kroes said Cartels strike at the heart of healthy economic activity. They undermine competition, raise prices for consumers and reduce the diversity, quality and innovation of European companies. The Commission has imposed high fines in this case, but if companies continue to indulge in cartel activities, then they can expect their fines to be even higher in the future.

Both Butadiene Rubber (BR) and Emulsion Styrene Butadiene Rubber (ESBR) are primarily used in tyre production. The main customers for BR and ESBR are the major tyre producers (such as Michelin, Pirelli and Goodyear). Other customers for BR and ESBR are producers of various types of consumer goods such as shoe soles, floor coverings and golf balls. While ESBR was produced or traded by all companies addressed by the Decision, BR was only produced by Eni, Bayer, Shell and Dow.

The investigation was prompted by applications for leniency lodged by Bayer in December 2002 and January 2003, under the 2002 Leniency Notice. In March 2003, the Commission carried out an unannounced inspection at Dow, which subsequently applied for leniency. Bayer received full immunity from fines under the Commissions leniency programme, as it was the first company to come forward with information about the cartel.

Evidence
The cartel Decision is based on numerous documents, corporate statements and witness interviews provided by the leniency applicants, together with meetings notes discovered by the Commission during the on-site inspection. The cartel agreements were made before or after the official meetings concerning BR and ESBR of the European Synthetic Rubber Association (ESRA). The cartel meetings took place in various cities (Milan, Vienna, Amsterdam, Prague and London, among others). During these meetings the participants agreed prices and exchanged information on key customers and the amounts of synthetic rubber supplied to them.

The statements from Bayer were to a large extent confirmed by the statements given by Dow. At a later stage, Shell also admitted to having participated in the cartel.

Fines
These practices are a very serious infringement of EC Treaty competition rules
ban on cartels and restrictive business practices. In fixing the fines, the Commission took into account the size of the EEA market for the product, the duration of the cartel and the size of the firms involved. The Commission increased the fines by 50% for Eni, Shell and Bayer because they were repeat offenders - they had already been condemned by the Commission for cartels in the polypropylene, PVC and citric acid sectors.

The cooperation of companies that provided important information on the infringement was rewarded, in line with the Commissions 2002 Leniency Notice. Consequently, Bayer (although itself a repeated offender) was granted full immunity, and the fine of Dow was reduced by 40%. The grant of reductions in fines depends not only on its value but also on how early the information is disclosed. Although Shell admitted to participating in the cartel, its contribution to the Commission's investigation did not qualify the company for a reduction of the fine under the provisions of the 2002 Leniency Notice, as it did not amount to significant added value.

Action for damages
Any person or firm affected by anti-competitive behaviour as described in this case may bring the matter before the courts of the Member States and seek damages, submitting elements of the published decision as evidence that the behaviour took place and was illegal. Even though the Commission has fined the companies concerned, damages may be awarded without these being reduced on account of the Commission fine. A Green Paper on private enforcement has been published.

Fines imposed and reductions granted by the Commission:

  Name and location of company Reduction
of fine %
Reduction of fine
(euros)
Fine
(euros)
1. Bayer, Germany    100   204,187,500         0
2. Dow, USA     40    43,050,000    64,575,000
3. Eni, Italy     0         0   272,250,000
4. Shell, Netherlands     0         0   160,875,000
5. Unipetrol, Czech Republic     0         0    17,550,000
6. Trade-Stomil, Poland     0         0     3,800,000
  TOTAL     247,237,500   519,050,000

Kaucuk    Unipetrol100%子会社

Kaucuk, a.s., is a chemical enterprise with many years' tradition, whose foundations were laid in 1954, when it was decided to initiate its building development in Kralupy nad Vltavou. The construction itself started in 1958 on the site of the former military airport. In 1963, the construction of the synthetic rubber production unit began; during the following years, production has been extended in the region of polystyrene polymers. In the mid eighties, the company rapidly expanded by putting the oil refinery unit into operation. The main products of this unit have been fuels and liquid gases; apart from them, the refinery also produces certain basic components for the production program of kaucuk, a.s. Within the process of the Czech petrochemistry restructuring, the oil refinery was split from the company in 1996 to form a newly founded company - ?eská rafinérská, a.s. A year later, the remaining petrochemical part of the plant became a part of the UNIPETROL group. The new strategic partner PKN ORLEN entered the UNIPETROL in June 2006.

kaucuk, a.s., produces a wide range of products. Styrene-butadiene rubbers are produced under the name KRALEX. They are mainly used in the rubber industry and boot and shoe industry and for the production of small household accessories and sportswear. KRASTEN is the trademark for standard high-impact polystyrene. KRASTEN found its application primarily in the electrical engineering industry, consumer goods and food industry. The expandable KOPLEN polystyrene has found its application primarily in the production of shaped pieces, foils, blocks, and insulation boards, and generally in the construction industry. FORSAN is the trademark for acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene polymer (ABS), which is used for the production of interiors and exteriors in the car industry. Furthermore, FORSAN can be used in the consumer goods and electrical engineering industry.

 


2006/9/13 BBC

EU fines cartel over
bitumen fix
The EC said that
Shell was the lead player in the bitumen cartel

The European Commission has fined some of the region's top oil firms including Shell and Total for their role in a cartel that fixed the price of bitumen.
In all the companies were fined $338m (
£180m; 266.7m euros), with Shell getting the largest penalty of $137m.
The fines were based on the size of the companies, the extent to which they were involved, and whether or not they had previously broken competition law.
UK oil firm
BP informed officials of the cartel and cooperated in the probe.

'Repeat offender'
The Commission said that between 1996 and 2004, eight suppliers and six road builders worked together to control bitumen prices in the Netherlands.
Along with Shell, it implicated the international oil firms BP, Total and Kuwait Petroleum.
Total received a fine of $25.7m for its part in the affair. Kuwait Petroleum was told to pay $21m.
BP escaped without any fine at all because of its role as whistle-blower and help with the subsequent investigation.
But
Shell was penalised very heavily.
"The fines for Shell were the highest because it was a repeat offender and because it played a leading role in the cartel," said the Commission's spokesman Jonathan Todd.
The fines were the seventh largest total penalty the regulator has ever imposed in a cartel case.
Shell has previously been fined by the Commission for price-fixing in the markets for PVC and propylene.
The company said it would examine the decision in detail before deciding whether or not to appeal.

New rules
The Commission also took a hard line towards the Dutch road building firm
Koninklijke Volker Wessels Stevin.
It said the company had tried to impede its investigation by denying inspectors access to its premises and forcing the national police force to become involved.
The company was ordered to pay a fine of $34.6m.
The bitumen probe reflects the Commission's determination to clamp down on companies which break EU competition laws, especially those which do so repeatedly.
Earlier this year, it unveiled new guidelines designed
to make the worst offenders pay much higher fines than they would have to in the past.


2001/11

Vitamin cartel fined for price fixing

The European Union today imposed record fines against drug companies for colluding to fix the price of vitamins.
Eight companies were fined 855.2m euros (
£529.5m) for what the EU antitrust chief, Mario Monti, described as the "most damaging series of cartels the commission has ever investigated".

Hoffman-La Roche of Switzerland received the largest fine, 462m euros, for being the "prime mover and main beneficiary" of the cartel.
Mr Monti said that the Swiss firm, the world's largest vitamin producer, was the main instigator and produced all 12 vitamins concerned.
The second-largest fine - 296m euros - was levied against Germany's
BASF, the world's second-biggest maker of vitamins.
The EU said that the eight had been under investigation since 1999 for collusion to eliminate fair competition for vitamin pills and to overcharge consumers.
"The companies' collusive behaviour enabled them to charge higher prices than if the full forces of competition had been at play, damaging consumers and allowing the companies to pocket illicit profits," Mr Monti said.
The EU halved the fines because the companies cooperated with its antitrust investigation. In addition to Hoffmann-La Roche and BASF, the EC also fined
Aventis SA (France), Solvay Pharmaceuticals (the Netherlands), Merck (Germany) as well as Daiichi Pharmaceutical, Esai and Takeda Chemical Industries, all of Japan.
The companies fixed prices in the European market through a cartel that had a "formal structure and hierarchy," including a regular exchange of sales figures and pricing data.
EU investigators found the price fixing started in the vitamin A and E market in the 1990s, then moved to other categories in the European vitamin market, estimated by the EU to be worth 800m euros in 1998.
The EU said La Roche and BASF formed a "common front" to enlist Japanese rivals to their cartel. It said that the involvement of La Roche's most senior executives suggested "the arrangements were part of a strategic plan conceived at the highest levels to control the world market in vitamins by illegal means".
La Roche, which is deciding whether to appeal, has been fined for the same price fixing practices in the US, Canada and Australia. In 1999, it set aside 2.4bn Swiss francs (
£1bn) to cover fines. Merck said that it accepted its fine of 9.24m euros as appropriate.
The cartels were established in products covering vitamins A, E, B1, B2, B5, B6, C, D3, Biotin (H), Folic acid (M), Beta Carotene and carotinoids.
Under EU law, companies found guilty of antitrust practices can be fined up to 10% of their total annual sales. The companies have three months to pay their fines or have the option to appeal to the EU's high court.


Apr 26, 2010

Kraton Performance Polymers Brings Poly-Isoprene Rubber Manufacturing to the U.S.

Kraton Performance Polymers, Inc., a leading global producer of
styrenic block copolymers or "SBC's" (together with Kraton Polymers LLC and its other subsidiaries "Kraton"), announced plans to invest approximately $27 million in its Belpre, Ohio plant to enable production of Poly-Isoprene Rubber. This strategic decision will allow Kraton to manufacture this product in the U.S. to support increased customer demand and the projected long-term needs of the market.

The demand and popularity of Poly-Isoprene Rubber (PIR) products has grown significantly, especially in the medical industry, due to its ability to provide comfort and
alternatives to natural rubber latex (NRL) products (which are often made with silicone or PVC-based devices). PIR is often substituted for NRL because it does not have natural impurities that can cause allergic reactions. Specific medical applications that benefit from the superior performance of Kraton Poly-Isoprene Rubber include catheters, surgical gloves, medical stoppers, medical tube connectors, dental dams, physiotherapy bands and personal care products.

"We are pleased to bring Poly-Isoprene Rubber manufacturing to our Belpre facility and believe that this location offers the best synergies between PIR and other existing SBC operations. It will allow Kraton to operate PIR production assets that are competitive and sustainable," said David Bradley, Chief Operating Officer. "Plant modifications and upgrades are scheduled to commence around the third quarter 2010 with the new PIR production capabilities expected by mid-2011."

"It is important to note," stated Bradley, "that Kraton has adequate PIR inventories on hand to satisfy its estimated customer demand throughout the scheduled Belpre modification phase. Customers, especially those in the medical segment, should be reassured that we foresee no interruption of supply as Kraton makes these capital improvements." Bradley added that "the U.S. location will, in fact, be better-suited to serve a region that increasingly seeks high quality alternatives to natural rubber for medical applications. The Belpre, Ohio plant should also offer a more reliable environment for future production of PIR to further serve existing and new customers. This investment further demonstrates our commitment to the industry." In December 2009, Kraton ceased production at its Pernis, the Netherlands PIR plant as part of the production relocation process.

About Kraton

Kraton Performance Polymers, Inc., through its operating subsidiary Kraton Polymers LLC and its subsidiaries, is a leading global producer of engineered polymers and, we believe, the world's largest producer of styrenic block copolymers ("SBC's"), a family of products whose chemistry was pioneered by us almost fifty years ago. SBC's are highly-engineered thermoplastic elastomers which enhance the performance of numerous products by delivering a variety of attributes, including greater flexibility, resilience, strength, durability and processability. Our polymers are used in a wide range of applications, including adhesives, coatings, consumer and personal care products, sealants and lubricants, and medical, packaging, automotive, paving, roofing and footwear products. We currently offer approximately 800 products to more than 700 customers in over 60 countries worldwide, and are the
only SBC producer with manufacturing and service capabilities on four continents. We manufacture products at five plants globally, including our flagship plant in Belpre, Ohio, as well as plants in Germany, France and Brazil, and a joint venture plant operated in Japan.
JSR クレイ トン エラストマー 熱可塑性エラストマーの製造及び販売  1987/4/27 設立  50/50JV)

The origins of Kraton Polymers and its role in the development of styrene-based thermoplastic elastomers can be traced back to the U.S. government's Synthetic Rubber (GR-S) program during World War II. Between 1942 and 1945 this program developed a new styrene butadiene synthetic rubber (SBR) and built plants to provide a critical alternative to natural rubber for making tires for military vehicles during the war.

Shell Chemical Company, who was a butadiene supplier to the SBR plants, bought one of the plants in Torrance, California, when the government decided to sell its holdings in 1955. This newly formed Elastomers Division of Shell Chemical evolved into what is today Kraton Polymers.

In the late 1990s and early 2000s, Shell sold many non-core businesses so that it could focus on oil exploration, refining, and commodity chemical products. As part of this divestiture program Shell sold Kraton Polymers to Ripplewood Holdings in March, 2001. In December, 2003, Texas Pacific Group and J.P. Morgan Partners acquired Kraton Polymers from Ripplewood.