Ana Paiva Regional Commercial Lead Polyethylene Latin America, EXXONMOBIL CHEMICAL
"Specifically on petrochemical solutions, we have developed our Exxtend technology for advanced recycling, which is critical to address plastic waste and circularity. We are now able to sell certified circular polymers contributing to the energy transition."
How has ExxonMobil performed in Latin America in the last 12 months?
Despite the business environment being challenging over the past 12 months, ExxonMobil achieved sustained growth and, our largest portfolio, polyethylene (PE), continued expanding. Other businesses like Vistamaxx, Butyl, and Intermediates are also demonstrating growth potential in Latin America, which is aligned with ExxonMobil’s long-term commitment to the region.
How could the economic slowdown forecast for Q4 2022 and 2023 impact the PE market?
Particularly during the Covid period of time, the GDP and the PE demand were not correlated. The key reasons include that market drivers have changed on the e-commerce side and the demand profile of the packaging industry has been reshaped. In the medium to long term, we expect the market fundamentals to remain tied to the GDP. In the short term the economic recession, the high inflation and the rising interest rates might impact petrochemical demand, including PE sales.
Can you explain how ExxonMobil’s new PE platform (Exceed S) provides opportunities to reduce the complexity of film formulations and designs while improving packaging performance?
The balance between stiffness and toughness is a challenge in formulations and for the converters overall, but the latest addition to ExxonMobil’s PE portfolio, branded Exceed S, helps the industry to solve this balance challenge. Exceed S is a state of the art solution combining stiffness and toughness while maintaining a good processability. It improves packaging and simplifies formulations reducing the need for additional materials delivering increased stiffness while the mechanical properties are still protected.
How has the company dealt with rising inflation and logistics costs?
The magnitude of rising inflation, increased logistics costs, and scarcity of raw materials have impacted ExxonMobil. The company has responded by leveraging its global capabilities and ability to integrate assets in order to minimize impact. Some challenges still remain, such as increased costs.
Can you provide examples of ExxonMobil’s latest sustainability-focused initiatives?
The Low Carbon Solution division is a new business focused on commercializing lower-emission business opportunities in carbon capture and storage, hydrogen and lower-emission fuels. The company has more than 30 years of experience capturing CO2 and has cumulatively captured more human-made CO2 than any other company.
Specifically on petrochemical solutions, we have developed our Exxtend technology for advanced recycling, which is critical to address plastic waste and circularity. We are now able to sell certified circular polymers contributing to the energy transition. We have built a world class advanced recycling facility in Baytown, Texas, and plan to have an additional 500,000 t/y in place by 2026 to address challenges in plastic waste and circularity.
In South America, ExxonMobil is part of a regional group tied to the Alliance to End Plastic Waste, which is promoting plug and play initiatives with startups. The company will continue developing molecules and formulations that enhance recyclability of products and are available to all our customers worldwide.