Malaysia: DOE lifts stop-work order on Lotte Chemical Titan's project

Bernama New Straits Times 6 Oct 17;

KUALA LUMPUR: The Department of Environment (DOE) has lifted the stop-work order on Lotte Chemical Titan Holding Bhd’s (Lotte) KBR Catalytic Olefins Technology catalytic cracking reactor within TE3 project in Pengerang, Johor.

In a filing to Bursa Malaysia today, Lotte said the stop-work order was lifted yesterday after the company satisfactorily completing requested remedial actions.

On Oct 1, Lotte received the the stop-work order from the DOE on its K-COT to mitigate and reduce odour emission and eliminate surface oil sheen/film discharge.

It said the commissioning and the commercial startup of its’ TE3 project remained on target by the fourth quarter of 2017.

“The stop-work order is not expected to have any material effect on our company’s and group’s earnings, net assets and gearing for the financial year ending Dec 31, 2017,” it said. -- Bernama

Lotte Chemical climbs after stop-work order lifted
The Star 6 Oct 17;

KUALA LUMPUR: Lotte Chemical Titan Holding Bhd's share price rose to a high of RM5.23 in afternoon trade on Friday after the Department of Environment lifted the stop-work order on its catalytic cracking reactor in Pengerang, Johor.

At 3.37pm, it was up 13 sen to RM5.23. There were 1.59 milion shares done.

The FBM KLCI rose 0.74 point or 0.04% to 1,759.83. Turnover was 1.78 billion shares valued at RM1.18bil. There were 382 gainers, 314 losers and 494 counters unchanged.

It annnounced to Bursa Malaysia on Friday the order was lifted the previous day after the company had “satisfactorily completed the requested remedial actions.

The order, which was issued on Sunday, involved its KBR Catalytic Olefins Technology catalytic cracking reactor.

The directive to halt the work was due to odour emission and surface oil sheen/film discharge. The cause was traced to the reaction of hot water from the TE3 Project poured into the waste water treatment plant containing pygas and pump failure at the waste water treatment plant.

Lotte Chemical Titan had also stated the stop-work order did not have any operational impact because the TE3 project has not started operations.

MSWG urges Lotte Chemical Titan to 'seriously strengthen' operational risk management
Mohd Sulhi Azman 9 Oct 17;

KUALA LUMPUR (Oct 9): The Minority Shareholder Watchdog Group (MSWG) has slapped Lotte Chemical Titan Holding Bhd, the largest initial public offering (IPO) on Bursa Malaysia this year, with a call to "seriously strengthen" its operational risk management to reduce its impact on the company's corporate image and financial objectives.

The call by MSWG was related to the recent five-day stop-work order at its catalytic cracking reactor plant, which is part of its TE3 Project, in Pasir Gudang, Johor.

"We believe even with the clarification statement released by the company to claim that the impact of the incidences was minimal to the company, damage has been done and the incidences could have impaired the confidence of the investing public towards the company," MSWG said in its latest The Observer weekly newsletter.

"This was the third incidence of operational disruption that happened to the company within the past three months since the listing of the company in July 2017," the watchdog group added.

The previous two incidences that had damaged the credibility of Lotte Chemical Titan's operating image were a fire that caused minor damage on Sept 20 and a 13-day water supply cut in April, following which the company saw a huge decline in production volume that subsequently eroded its earnings in the second quarter ended June 30, 2017.

To recap, Lotte Chemical Titan had on Oct 1 received a stop-work order from the Department of Environment (DOE), which subsequently resulted in a sharp drop in its share price to below RM5 the next day — the lowest since its listing on July 11.

Following satisfactory completion of the remedial action, Lotte Chemical Titan said the stop-work order was lifted by the DOE on Oct 5.

The DOE, under Section 38 of the Environmental Quality Act 1972, is empowered to inspect — without a warrant — and also to stop the operation of any vehicle, ship, aircraft, or businesses at any premises suspected of causing environmental damage.

As for the stop-work order — a government directive that has tarnished its corporate image — Lotte Chemical Titan said it was issued after the DOE had identified its plant in Johor as the source of a stench that had reached Singapore's shores.

The stop-work order, the chemical firm added, was given to mitigate and reduce odour emission and eliminate surface oil sheen/film discharge.

As for the potential impact, the petrochemical firm owned by Lotte Co Ltd, a South Korean conglomerate behemoth, had previously said that "it does not have any operational impact", as its TE3 Project has not commenced operations.

Code-named TE3, Lotte Chemical Titan had in its IPO prospectus said the project aims to increase the output of ethylene, propylene and other by-products such as C4 and C5, which will be done after it completed the construction of relevant facilities.

"The commissioning and the commercial start-up of the TE3 Project remain on target by fourth quarter of 2017," Lotte Chemical Titan had on Oct 4 said in a filing with Bursa Malaysia.

At noon break, shares in Lotte Chemical Trading fell one sen or 0.2% to pause at RM5.22 today, giving it a market capitalisation of RM12.05 billion.

Stench in Singapore: Chemical plant operating again after DOE lifts stop work order
Rizalman Hammim New Straits Times 12 Oct 17;

JOHOR BARU: The Johor Department of Environment (DOE) have lifted a stop work order on a chemical plant in Pasir Gudang which was found to be the cause of the chemical stench tainting the air over Singapore last month.

Its director Datuk Dr Mohammad Ezanni Mat Salleh said the order was lifted last Thursday and the plant is currently operating as usual.

"We have inspected and are satisfied the remedial works that was done. The plant has begun operating as usual since last Thursday," said Ezanni.

The stop work order was issued after the plant suffered a fire at one of its facilities early last month. DOE then identified the plant as the source of a chemical stench that enveloped parts of northern Singapore.

Singapore's National Environment Agency (NEA) had earlier traced the source of the chemical stench that cloaked the island on Sept 25 to an industrial facility in Pasir Gudang.

The agency was reported as saying that it had contacted the DOE to seek its assistance after the smell was detected.

"The DOE has deployed resources in identifying the source of the smell. It has traced the source to an industrial facility in Pasir Gudang and is taking action against the operator," NEA said.

Residents in Sengkang and Punggol complained about an acrid, chemical stench that was later detected in areas such as Ang Mo Kio, Yishun, Seletar and Bishan. Thick smoke also hung over some of the affected areas, Singapore residents said.