Shell and BASF plan polyolefins JV

Royal Dutch/Shell and BASF AG are negotiating a deal to combine their polyolefins businesses into a 50-50 joint venture with a combined turnover of more than $6 billion/year.The companies anticipate that a deal could be ready for signature by yearend. The combine would be based in the Netherlands and would be the world's largest producer of polypropylene and the fourth largest polyethylene maker.The plan is apparently driven by a need to cut unit costs in the face of overcapacity and low margins in the European petrochemicals sector.The JV would comprise the assets of Shell's Montell subsidiary, BASF's Targor JV, and the Shell/BASF Elenac combine. Montell is wholly owned by Shell...

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