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Borealis key financial results in 2017 Q1.
Borealis key financial results in 2017 Q1.

Polyolefins specialist Borealis announced a net profit of €313 million for the first quarter of 2017, compared with €255 million in the same quarter of 2016.

The strong result was driven by continuing high margins in the polyolefins business and by an improved contribution from Borouge, according to the company. The contribution from Base Chemicals was lower compared to the first quarter of 2016, as a result of a more difficult fertilizer market environment.

"Borealis continues to benefit from the strong polyolefins industry margin supporting the polyolefins business profit contribution," commented Mark Garrett, Borealis Chief Executive. "The Borouge result in the first quarter was firm but was impacted by the limited availability of feedstock. All in all our excellent financial performance has also allowed us to return cash to our shareholders, via a €750 million dividend, probably a record in Austrian industrial history."

Borealis and Nova Chemicals Corporation signed a preliminary agreement to form a joint venture (JV) with Total Petrochemicals and Refining USA, Inc. Key aspects of the JV will include building a new 1,000 kilotons per annum (ktpa) ethane cracker in Port Arthur, Texas, the US and anew 625 ktpa Borstar polyethylene (PE) plant in Bayport, Texas. It will also include owning and operating Total's existing Bayport PE facility, with a total capacity of 400 ktpa.

The JV is expected to be established in late 2017 and the final investment decision on the Borstar PE plant will be taken at the same time. The ethane cracker and Borstar PE plant are planned to start-up in late 2020.

"In the second quarter, Borealis expects another solid result. The fertilizer market conditions are improving and we expect the polyolefins business and Borouge to continue to perform well. The main challenge going forward this year will be the successful execution of a record number of planned turnarounds, involving multiple locations," said Garrett.

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