Refining & Chemicals includes the Group’s refining, petrochemicals and specialty chemicals businesses. The petrochemicals business includes base petrochemicals (olefins and aromatics) and polymer derivatives (polyethylene, polypropylene, polystyrene and hydrocarbon resins). The specialty chemicals business includes elastomer processing and electroplating chemistry. The volume of its Refining & Chemicals activities places TOTAL among the top ten integrated chemical producers in the world(1).
Against the backdrop of rising worldwide demand for oil and petrochemicals driven by non-OECD countries and the entry of new capacities into the market, the strategy of Refining & Chemicals, in addition to the priority given to safety and environmental protection, involves:
- adapting production capacity to changes in demand in Europe by concentrating investments on large integrated platforms;
- consolidating industrial means of production and searching for opportunities for growth in the United States; and
- strengthening TOTAL’s positions in Asia and the Middle East, in particular to gain access to advantaged oil and gas feedstocks and to benefit from market growth.
This strategy is underpinned by an effort to differentiate through the technology used and innovation found in its products and processes, while pursuing portfolio management to focus on core businesses.
Since 2012, Refining & Chemicals has launched a comprehensive program to improve operational efficiency and to generate synergies between its refining and petrochemicals activities. In particular, four industrial priorities were set: safety, availability of facilities, cost control, and energy efficiency. These ongoing action plans, combined with development projects on the major integrated platforms, perimeter changes and the growth of specialty chemicals, have already boosted Refining & Chemicals’ results and should continue to improve the profitability of operations with the goal of making the most of the division’s assets.
In December 2014, TOTAL completed the divestment of its subsidiary CCP Composites (100%), a player in the composite resins segment. In June 2013, TOTAL completed the divestment of its Fertilizers activity (Base Chemicals) in Europe, mainly through the sale of all of its shares in GPN S.A., a leading producer of nitrogen fertilizers in France, and in the Belgian company Rosier S.A.(2)
On February 2, 2015, TOTAL finalized the divestment of its whollyowned subsidiary Bostik, specialized in adhesive chemicals, to the Arkema group. This divestment follows the offer received in September 2014. Bostik has approximately 4,900 employees over forty-eight production sites in the world and its sales were €1.5 billion ($2 billion) in 2014.
(1) Based on publicly available information, production capacities at year-end 2013.
(2) The divestment did not include TOTAL’s interest in Grande Paroisse S.A., through which TOTAL has retained all liabilities related to the former activities of Grande Paroisse, and in particular those related to the AZF site in Toulouse.