Braskem SA 20-F 2005
Documents found in this filing:
SECURITIES AND EXCHANGE COMMISSION
Washington, D.C. 20549
For the fiscal year ended December 31, 2004
Commission file number: 001-14862
(Exact Name of Registrant as Specified in its Charter)
(Translation of Registrants name into English)
Federative Republic of Brazil
(Jurisdiction of Incorporation or Organization)
Av. das Nações Unidas, 4777
São Paulo, SPCEP 05477-000 Brazil
(Address of principal executive offices) (Zip code)
Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(b) of the Exchange Act:
Securities registered pursuant to Section 12(g) of the Act:
Securities for which there is a reporting obligation pursuant to Section 15(d) of the Act:
The total number of issued shares of each class of stock of BRASKEM S.A. as of December 31, 2004 was:
Indicate by check mark whether the Registrant (1) has filed all reports required to be filed by Section 13 or 15(d) of the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 during the preceding 12 months (or such shorter period that the Registrant was required to file such reports), and (2) has been subject to such filing requirements for the past 90 days. Yes x No ¨
Indicate by check mark which financial statement item the Registrant has elected to follow Item 17 ¨ Item 18 x.
References to real, reais or R$ are to Brazilian reais (plural) and to the Brazilian real (singular), the official currency of Brazil; and references to U.S. dollars, dollars or US$ are to United States dollars.
All references herein (i) to we, us or our company are references to Braskem S.A. and its consolidated subsidiaries and (ii) to Braskem are references solely to Braskem S.A.
On December 31, 2004, the exchange rate for reais into U.S. dollars was R$2.654 to US$1.00, based on the commercial selling rate as reported by the Central Bank of Brazil (Banco Central do Brasil), or the Central Bank. The commercial selling rate was R$2.889 to US$1.00 at December 31, 2003. The real/dollar exchange rate fluctuates widely, and the commercial selling rate at December 31, 2003 may not be indicative of future exchange rates. See Item 3. Key InformationExchange Rates for information regarding exchange rates for the Brazilian currency since January 1, 2000.
Solely for the convenience of the reader, we have translated some amounts included in Item 3. Key InformationSelected Financial Information and elsewhere in this annual report from reais into U.S. dollars using the commercial selling rate as reported by the Central Bank at December 31, 2004 of R$2.654 to US$1.00. These translations should not be considered representations that any such amounts have been, could have been or could be converted into U.S. dollars at that or at any other exchange rate. Such translations should not be construed as representations that the real amounts represent or have been or could be converted into U.S. dollars as of that or any other date.
Braskem Financial Statements
We maintain our books and records in reais.
Our consolidated and combined financial statements at December 31, 2004 and 2003 and for each of the years ended December 31, 2004, 2003 and 2002 have been audited as stated in the report appearing herein, and are included in this annual report.
We prepare our consolidated financial statements in accordance with accounting practices adopted in Brazil, or Brazilian GAAP, which are based on:
Brazilian GAAP differs in significant respects from accounting principles generally accepted in the United States, or U.S. GAAP. For more information about the differences between Brazilian GAAP and U.S. GAAP and a reconciliation of our net income (loss) and shareholders equity from Brazilian GAAP to U.S. GAAP, see note 29 to our audited consolidated and combined financial statements included elsewhere in this annual report.
Consistent with Brazilian GAAP, our consolidated and combined financial statements at December 31, 2004 and 2003 and for the years ended December 31, 2004, 2003 and 2002 have been prepared in accordance with Brazilian Securities Commission Instruction No. 247/96, as amended by Brazilian Securities Commission Instruction Nos. 269/97, 285/98 and 319/99, which we refer to collectively as Instruction 247. Instruction 247
requires our company to consolidate proportionally jointly controlled companies that are not our subsidiaries, but which we jointly control with one or more other shareholders. The U.S. GAAP reconciliation eliminates the effects of proportional consolidation for those companies that are not jointly controlled by all voting shareholders.
Copesul Financial Statements
We have included separate consolidated financial statements of CopesulCompanhia Petroquímica do Sul, or Copesul, in this annual report because Copesul constitutes a significant jointly controlled company, accounting for 38.8% of our income from continuing operations before income taxes in 2004. Copesul maintains its books and records in reais and prepares its financial statements in accordance with Brazilian GAAP. Copesuls consolidated financial statements at December 31, 2004 and 2003 and for each of the years ended December 31, 2004, 2003 and 2002 included in this annual report have been audited, as stated in the report appearing herein. Copesuls consolidated financial statements are proportionally consolidated into the Braskems consolidated financial statements under Brazilian GAAP, as described above under Braskem Financial Statements.
On October 20, 2003, we authorized the split of all of our issued common shares, class A preferred shares and class B preferred shares into 20 shares for each issued share. This 20-for-one share split was effective on October 21, 2003. As a result of this share split, the ratio of our class A preferred shares to American Depositary Shares, or ADSs, changed from 50 class A preferred shares per ADS to 1,000 class A preferred shares per ADS.
On March 31, 2005, we authorized the reverse split of all of our issued common shares, class A preferred shares and class B preferred shares into one share for each 250 issued shares. This reverse share split became effective on May 16, 2005. In connection with this reverse share split, we authorized a change in the ratio of our ADSs upon the effectiveness of our reverse share split and the ratio change, the ratio of our class A preferred shares to ADSs changed from 1,000 class A preferred shares per ADS to two class A preferred shares per ADS.
All references to numbers of shares and dividend amounts in this annual report have been adjusted to give effect to the 20-for-one share split, the one-for-250 reverse share split and the change in the ratio of our class A preferred shares to ADSs.
Market Share and Other Information
We make statements in this annual report about our market share in the petrochemical industry in Brazil and our production capacity relative to that of other petrochemical producers in Brazil and Latin America. We have made these statements on the basis of information obtained from third party sources that we believe are reliable. We have calculated our Brazilian market shares with respect to specific products by dividing our domestic net sales volumes of these products by the total Brazilian domestic consumption of these products estimated by the Brazilian Association of Chemical Industry and Derivative Products (Associação Brasileira de Indústrias Químicas e de Produtos Derivados). We derive information regarding the production capacity of other companies in the Brazilian petrochemical industry and the estimated total Brazilian domestic consumption of petrochemical products principally from reports published by the Brazilian Association of Chemical Industry and Derivative Products. Although we have no reason to believe that any of this information is inaccurate in any material respect, we have not independently verified the production capacity, market share, market size or similar data provided by third parties or derived from industry or general publications.
Production Capacity and Sales Volume
As used in this annual report:
We have made rounding adjustments to reach some of the figures included in this annual report. As a result, numerical figures shown as totals in some tables may not be an arithmetic aggregation of the figures that preceded them.
CAUTIONARY STATEMENT WITH RESPECT TO FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS
This annual report contains forward-looking statements. Some of the matters discussed concerning our business operations and financial performance include forward-looking statements within the meaning of the Securities Act or the U.S. Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended, or the Exchange Act.
Statements that are predictive in nature, that depend upon or refer to future events or conditions or that include words such as expects, anticipates, intends, plans, believes, estimates and similar expressions are forward-looking statements. Although we believe that these forward-looking statements are based upon reasonable assumptions, these statements are subject to several risks and uncertainties and are made in light of information currently available to us.
Our forward-looking statements may be influenced by factors, including the following:
Our forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance, and the actual results or developments may differ materially from the expectations expressed in the forward-looking statements. As for the forward-looking statements that relate to future financial results and other projections, actual results will be different due to the inherent uncertainty of estimates, forecasts and projections. Because of these uncertainties, potential investors should not rely on these forward-looking statements.
We undertake no obligation to publicly update any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.
ITEM 3. KEY INFORMATION
Selected Financial Information
The following selected financial data has been derived from our consolidated and combined financial statements.
The selected financial data at December 31, 2004 and 2003 and for the three years ended December 31, 2004 have been derived from our consolidated and combined financial statements included in this annual report. The selected financial data at December 31, 2002 and 2001 and for the year ended December 31, 2001 has been derived from our audited consolidated and combined financial statements that are not included in this annual report. The selected financial data at December 31, 2000 and for the year ended December 31, 2000 have been derived from audited consolidated financial statements of our company that are not included in this annual report.
Our financial statements are prepared in accordance with Brazilian GAAP, which differs in significant respects from U.S. GAAP. For a discussion of the differences relating to these financial statements and a reconciliation of our net income (loss) and shareholders equity from Brazilian GAAP to U.S. GAAP, see note 29 to our audited consolidated and combined financial statements included in this annual report.
This financial information should be read in conjunction with Item 5. Operating and Financial Review and Prospects and our audited consolidated and combined financial statements included elsewhere in this annual report.
All per share data presented below for periods before October 21, 2003 have been adjusted to give effect to the 20-for-one share split that was effective on that date, and all per share data presented below have been further adjusted to give effect to the one-for-250 reverse share split that was effective on May 16, 2005.
Prior to March 14, 2005, there were two principal foreign exchange markets in Brazil:
Most trade and financial foreign-exchange transactions were carried out on the commercial rate exchange market. The floating rate exchange market generally applied to transactions to which the commercial market rate did not apply.
On March 4, 2005, the National Monetary Council (Conselho Monetário Nacional) enacted Resolution No. 3,265, as well as additional regulations, that consolidated the two foreign exchange markets into a single foreign exchange market, effective as of March 14, 2005, in order to make foreign exchange transactions more straight-forward and efficient. Consequently, all foreign exchange transactions in Brazil are now carried out in this single foreign exchange market through authorized financial institutions. We cannot predict the impact of the enactment of any new regulations on the foreign exchange market.
Foreign exchange rates continue to be freely negotiated, but may be influenced from time to time by Central Bank intervention. From March 1995 through January 1999, the Central Bank allowed the gradual devaluation of the real against the U.S. dollar. In January 1999, the Central Bank allowed the real/U.S. dollar exchange rate to float freely. Since then, the real/U.S. dollar exchange rate has been established mainly by the Brazilian interbank market and has fluctuated considerably. From December 31, 1999 through December 31, 2004, the real devalued by 32.6% against the U.S. dollar, and at June 24, 2005, the selling rate for U.S. dollars was R$2.387 per US$1.00. In the past, the Central Bank has intervened occasionally to control unstable movements in foreign exchange rates. We cannot predict whether the Central Bank or the Brazilian government will continue to allow the real to float freely or will intervene in the exchange rate market through a currency band system or otherwise, or that the exchange market will not be volatile as a result of political or economic instability or other factors. We also cannot predict whether the real will depreciate or appreciate in value in relation to the U.S. dollar in the future.
The following table shows the commercial selling rate or selling rate, as applicable, for U.S. dollars for the periods and dates indicated. The information in the Average column represents the average of the exchange rates on the last day of each month during the periods presented.
Source: Central Bank
Risks Relating to Brazil
Brazilian political and economic conditions, and the Brazilian governments economic and other policies, may negatively affect demand for our products as well as our net sales revenue and overall financial performance.
The Brazilian economy has been characterized by frequent and occasionally extensive intervention by the Brazilian government and unstable economic cycles. The Brazilian government has often changed monetary, taxation, credit, tariff and other policies to influence the course of Brazils economy. The Brazilian governments actions to control inflation and implement other policies have at times involved wage and price controls, blocking access to bank accounts, imposing capital controls and limiting imports into Brazil.
Our results of operations and financial condition may be adversely affected by factors such as:
Luiz Inácio Lula da Silva of the Workers Party took office as President of Brazil on January 1, 2003. The Brazilian government has adopted economic measures that are more conservative than initially expected by some observers. However, the Brazilian government may change these policies in a manner that slows the growth of the Brazilian economy, reducing demand for our products and, consequently, impairing our net sales revenue and overall financial performance. Any negative effect on our overall financial performance would also likely lead to a decrease in the market price of our class A preferred shares and the ADSs.
The Brazilian governments actions to combat inflation may contribute significantly to economic uncertainty in Brazil and reduce demand for our products.
Historically, Brazil has experienced high rates of inflation. Inflation, as well as government efforts to combat inflation, had significant negative effects on the Brazilian economy, particularly prior to 1995. The inflation rate, as measured by the General Price IndexInternal Availability (Índice Geral de PreçosDisponibilidade Interna), reached 2,708% in 1993. Although inflation rates have been substantially lower since 1994 than in previous periods, inflationary pressures persist. Inflation rates were 10.4% in 2001, 26.4% in 2002, 7.7% in 2003 and 12.1% in 2004, as measured by the General Price IndexInternal Availability. The Brazilian governments measures to control inflation have often included maintaining a tight monetary policy with high interest rates, thereby restricting availability of credit and reducing economic growth. Inflation, actions to combat inflation and public speculation about possible additional actions also contributed materially to economic uncertainty in Brazil and to heightened volatility in the Brazilian securities markets.
Brazil may experience high levels of inflation in future periods. Increasing prices for petroleum, the depreciation of the real and future governmental measures seeking to maintain the value of the real in relation to the U.S. dollar, may trigger increases in inflation in Brazil. Periods of higher inflation may slow the rate of growth of the Brazilian economy, which would lead to reduced demand for our products in Brazil and decreased
net sales revenue. Inflation also is likely to increase some of our costs and expenses, which we may not be able to pass on to our customers and, as a result, may reduce our profit margins and net income. In addition, high inflation generally leads to higher domestic interest rates, and, as a result, the costs of servicing our real-denominated debt may increase, causing our net income to be reduced. Inflation and its effect on domestic interest rates can, in addition, lead to reduced liquidity in the domestic capital and lending markets, which could adversely affect our ability to refinance our indebtedness in those markets. Any decline in our net sales revenue or net income and any deterioration in our financial condition would also likely lead to a decline in the market price of our class A preferred shares and the ADSs.
Fluctuations in interest rates could raise the cost of servicing our debt and negatively affect our overall financial performance.
Our financial expenses are affected by changes in the interest rates that apply to our floating rate debt. At December 31, 2004, we had R$1,175.1 million of loans and financing and debentures that were subject to the Long-Term Interest Rate, R$305.0 million of loans and financing and debentures that were subject to the CDI (Certificado Depositário Interbancário), an interbank rate, and R$1,357.6 million of loans and financing that were subject to LIBOR. The Long-Term Interest Rate (Taxa de Longo Prazo) is a Brazilian long-term interest rate that includes an inflation factor and is determined quarterly by the Central Bank. In particular, the Long-Term Interest Rate and the CDI rate have fluctuated significantly in the past in response to the expansion or contraction of the Brazilian economy, inflation, Brazilian government policies and other factors. For example, in 2004 the CDI rate increased from 16.3% per annum at December 31, 2003 to 17.8% per annum at December 31, 2004. See Item 11. Quantitative and Qualitative Disclosures About Market Risk. A significant increase in any of these interest rates could adversely affect our financial expenses and negatively affect our overall financial performance.
Fluctuations in the real/U.S. dollar exchange rate could increase inflation in Brazil, raise the cost of servicing our foreign currency-denominated debt and negatively affect our overall financial performance.
The exchange rate between the real and the U.S. dollar and the relative rates of depreciation and appreciation of the real have affected our results of operations and may continue to do so.
The Brazilian currency has devalued often during the last four decades. Throughout this period, the Brazilian government has implemented various economic plans and various exchange rate policies, including sudden devaluations, periodic mini-devaluations (during which the frequency of adjustments has ranged from daily to monthly), exchange controls, dual exchange rate markets and a floating exchange rate system. From time to time, there have been significant fluctuations in the exchange rate between the Brazilian currency and the U.S. dollar and other currencies. For example, the real depreciated in value against the U.S. dollar by 34.3% in 2002 as compared with appreciation of 22.3% in 2003 and 8.9% in 2004.
Devaluation of the real relative to the U.S. dollar also could result in additional inflationary pressures in Brazil by generally increasing the price of imported products and services and requiring recessionary government policies to curb demand. In addition, a devaluation of the real could weaken investor confidence in Brazil and reduce the market price of our class A preferred shares and the ADSs. On the other hand, appreciation of the real against the U.S. dollar may lead to a deterioration of the countrys current account and the balance of payments and may dampen export-driven growth.
We had total foreign currency-denominated debt obligations in an aggregate amount of R$4,177.8 million (US$1,573.9 million) at December 31, 2004, representing 69.6% of our indebtedness, excluding related party debt, on a consolidated basis. At December 31, 2004, we had US$461.5 million in U.S. dollar-denominated cash equivalents and other investments. At December 31, 2004, we did not have any foreign currency derivative instruments. A significant devaluation of the real in relation to the U.S. dollar or other currencies could reduce our ability to meet debt service requirements of our foreign currency-denominated obligations, particularly as our net sales revenue is primarily denominated in reais.
In addition, any significant devaluation of the real will increase our financial expenses as a result of foreign exchange losses that we must record. For example, the 34.3% devaluation of the real in 2002 substantially increased our financial expenses and was a significant factor in our net loss for that year.
The prices of naphtha, our most important raw material, and of some of our other raw materials are denominated in or linked to the U.S. dollar. In 2004, 67.7% of our direct and indirect cost of sales and services were represented by the cost of naphtha. When the real depreciates against the U.S. dollar, the cost in reais of our U.S. dollar-linked raw materials increases, and our operating income in reais decreases.
Brazilian government exchange control policies could increase the cost of servicing our foreign currency-denominated debt and impair our liquidity
The purchase and sale of foreign currency in Brazil is subject to governmental control. In the past, the Central Bank has centralized certain payments of principal on external obligations. Many factors could cause the Brazilian government to institute more restrictive exchange control policies, including the extent of Brazils foreign currency reserves, the availability of sufficient foreign exchange on the date a payment is due, the size of Brazils debt service burden relative to the economy as a whole, Brazils policy towards the International Monetary Fund and political constraints to which Brazil may be subject. A more restrictive policy could increase the cost of servicing (and thereby reduce our ability to pay) our foreign currency-denominated debt obligations and other liabilities. Our foreign-currency denominated debt represented 69.6% of our indebtedness on a consolidated basis at December 31, 2004. If we fail to make payments under any of these obligations, we will be in default under those obligations, which could reduce our liquidity as well as the market price of our class A preferred shares and the ADSs.
Changes in tax laws may result in increases in certain direct and indirect taxes, which could reduce our gross margin and negatively affect our overall financial performance.
The Brazilian government regularly implements changes to tax regimes that may increase our and our customers tax burdens. These changes include modifications in the rate of assessments and, on occasion, enactment of temporary taxes, the proceeds of which are earmarked for designated governmental purposes. In April 2003, the Brazilian government presented a tax reform proposal, which was mainly designed to simplify tax assessments, to avoid internal disputes within and between the Brazilian states and municipalities, and to redistribute tax revenues. The tax reform proposal provided for changes in the rules governing the federal Social Integration Program (Programa de Integração Social), or PIS, the federal Contribution for Social Security Financing (Contribuição para Financiamento da Seguridade Social COFINS), or COFINS, the Tax on the Circulation of Merchandise and Services (Imposto Sobre a Circulação de Mercadorias e Serviços), or ICMS, the Tax on Bank Account Transactions (Contribuição Provisória sobre Movimentação ou Transmissão de Valores e de Créditos e Direitos de Natureza Financeira), or CPMF, and some other taxes.
In December 2003, the Brazilian Federal Senate approved part of this tax reform proposal following its approval by the Brazilian Federal House of Representatives. Other parts of the tax reform proposal were amended by the Senate and returned to the House of Representatives for further examination. The amendments to the tax reform proposal and other items pending before the Brazilian legislature were consolidated in a Project for Constitutional Amendment (Projeto de Emenda Constitucional). We expect that the Project for Constitutional Amendment will be reviewed and submitted to a vote of the House of Representatives in the near future. Upon approval by both houses of the Brazilian legislature, the Project for Constitutional Amendment will be submitted to the President for his review and execution. If enacted, these tax reform measures will be gradually adopted beginning in 2005 and continuing through 2007. The effects of these proposed tax reform measures and any other changes that result from enactment of additional tax reforms have not been, and cannot be, quantified. However, some of these measures, if enacted, may result in increases in our overall tax burden, which could reduce our gross margin and negatively affect our overall financial performance.
Risks Relating to Our Company and the Petrochemical Industry
The cyclical nature of the petrochemical industry may reduce our net sales revenue and gross margin.
The Brazilian petrochemical industry, including the markets in which we compete, is cyclical and sensitive to changes in supply and demand that are, in turn, affected by political and economic conditions in Brazil and elsewhere. This cyclicality may reduce our net sales revenue and gross margin. In particular:
The global petrochemical industry is also cyclical. Historically, the international petrochemical markets have experienced alternating periods of limited supply, which have caused prices and profit margins to increase, followed by expansion of production capacity, which has resulted in oversupply and reduced prices and profit margins. The Brazilian petrochemical industry has become increasingly integrated with the global petrochemical industry for a number of reasons, including increased demand for, and consumption of, petrochemical products in Brazil and the ongoing integration of regional and world markets for commodity products. Prices for our products sold in Brazil are established with reference to international market prices. Our net sales revenue and gross margin are increasingly linked to global industry conditions that we cannot control.
We face competition from producers of polyolefins, vinyls and other petrochemical products.
We face competition in Brazil from Brazilian and international producers of polyethylene, polypropylene, vinyls and other petrochemical products. In addition, our prices for our second generation products are generally set with reference to the prices charged for these products by foreign producers in international markets. We anticipate that we may experience increasingly intense competition from international producers of polyolefins and vinyls products, both in Brazil and in selected foreign markets in which we sell these products. Many of our foreign competitors are substantially larger and have substantially greater financial, manufacturing, technological and marketing resources than our company.
We face significant competition in the polyethylene market. Rio Polímeros S.A., or Rio Polímeros, a Brazilian petrochemical company, commenced operations on June 23, 2005. The announced annual capacity of this plant is 520,000 tons of ethylene, 75,000 tons of propylene and 540,000 tons of polyethylene (representing an increase of approximately 35% of the current total Brazilian production capacity of polyethylene). In addition, Solvay Indupa do Brasil S.A., or Solvay, has announced that it will expand its annual polyvinylchloride, or PVC, production capacity in Brazil by 35,000 tons commencing in the second half of 2005. Actions by our competitors, including any future increases in their capacity, may make it increasingly difficult for us to maintain our domestic market share in our thermoplastic products (polyethylene, polypropylene and PVC).
Higher naphtha costs would increase our cost of sales and services rendered and may reduce our gross margin and negatively affect our overall financial performance.
Naphtha, a crude oil derivative, is the principal raw material of our Basic Petrochemicals Unit and, indirectly, our other business units. In 2004, naphtha accounted, directly and indirectly, for approximately two-thirds of our consolidated cost of sales and services rendered. The price of naphtha supplied by PetrobrasPetróleo Brasileiro S.A., or Petrobras, is linked to the Amsterdam-Rotterdam-Antwerp market price of naphtha and to the real/U.S. dollar exchange rate. The price of naphtha that we purchase from other suppliers is also linked to the Amsterdam-Rotterdam-Antwerp market price. The Amsterdam-Rotterdam-Antwerp market price of naphtha fluctuates primarily based on changes in the U.S. dollar-based price of crude oil in the international markets.
During 2004, the price of naphtha in U.S. dollars increased by 22.9%, from US$313.00 per ton in December 2003 to US$387.05 per ton in December 2004. The U.S. dollar price of naphtha was volatile during 2004, increasing substantially between February and October before declining in November and December of 2004. The price of naphtha in U.S. dollars continued to increase after December 31, 2004, reaching US$394.86 per ton at January 31, 2005, US$416.23 per ton at February 28, 2005, US$477.43 per ton at March 31, 2005, and US$521.00 per ton at April 4, 2005. Following April 4, 2005, the price of naptha in U.S. dollars has declined to US$438.50 per ton at April 30, 2005 and US$406.00 per ton at May 27, 2005. The price of naphtha may increase significantly or the real may devalue significantly in the future. An increase in naphtha costs would reduce our gross margin and negatively affect our overall financial performance to the extent that we are unable to pass on these increased costs to our customers and could result in reduced sales volumes of our products.
We do not hedge against changes in naphtha prices, so that we are exposed to fluctuations in the price of our primary raw material.
We currently do not hedge our exposure to fluctuations in naphtha prices, which are linked to the real/U.S. dollar exchange rate. Although we attempt to pass on increases in naphtha prices through the prices of our products, in periods of high volatility in the real/U.S. dollar exchange rate, there is usually a lag between the time that the U.S. dollar appreciates and the time that we may effectively pass on those increased costs in reais to our customers in Brazil. As a result, if the real depreciates precipitously against the U.S. dollar in the future, we may not immediately be able to pass on all of the corresponding increases in our naphtha costs to our customers in Brazil, which would likely reduce our gross margin and net income.
We depend on Petrobras to supply us with the substantial portion of our naphtha requirements.
Petrobras currently is the only Brazilian supplier of naphtha and supplied 62.3% of the naphtha consumed by our company in 2004. Petrobras produces some of the naphtha it sells to us and imports the balance. Our production volume and net sales revenue would likely decrease and our overall financial performance would likely be negatively affected in the event of:
In addition, although regulatory changes have ended Petrobras monopoly in the Brazilian naphtha market and have allowed us to import naphtha, any reversal in the continuing deregulation of the oil and gas industry in Brazil could increase our production costs.
Our Polyolefins and Vinyls Units depend on our Basic Petrochemicals Unit and Copesul to supply them with their ethylene and propylene requirements.
Our Basic Petrochemicals Unit is the only supplier of ethylene to our Vinyls Unit, and our Basic Petrochemicals Unit and Copesul are the only suppliers of ethylene and propylene to our Polyolefins Unit. Because the cost of storing ethylene and propylene is substantial and there is inadequate infrastructure in Brazil to permit the importation of large quantities of these products, our production volumes of, and net sales revenue from, vinyls and polyolefins products would decrease, and our overall financial performance would be negatively affected, in the event of:
In addition, any significant expansion of the production capacity of our Polyolefins Unit in the Southern Complex will depend on our ability to obtain additional ethylene and propylene from Copesul.
Any downgrade in the ratings of our company or our debt securities would likely result in increased interest and other financial expenses related to our borrowings and debt securities and could reduce our liquidity.
Standard & Poors Ratings Services, a division of The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc., or Standard and Poors, and Fitch, Inc., or Fitch, maintain ratings of our company and our debt securities. Currently, Standard and Poors and Fitch maintain ratings of our company on a local basis and Standard & Poors also maintains ratings of our company on a global basis. Standard and Poors maintains a rating of our company on a local basis of Br AA- and Fitch maintains a national rating for our company of AA- (bra). On a global basis, Standard and Poors maintains a local currency rating for our company of BB and a foreign currency rating for our company of BB-, while Fitch maintains a local currency rating for our company of BB+ and a foreign currency rating for our company of BB-. Any decision by these or other rating agencies to downgrade the ratings of our company or of our debt securities in the future would likely result in increased interest and other financial expenses relating to our borrowings and debt securities and could significantly reduce our ability to obtain such financing on satisfactory terms or in amounts required by us and our liquidity.
Some of our shareholders may have the ability to determine the outcome of corporate actions or decisions, which could affect the holders of our class A preferred shares and the ADSs.
The Odebrecht Group directly holds 47.5% of our voting share capital, and its designees currently constitute a majority of the members of our board of directors. In addition, the Odebrecht Group owns 62.5% of the voting share capital of Nordeste Química S.A.Norquisa, or Norquisa, which owns 25.4% of our voting share capital and 9.1% of our total share capital. Some of our other shareholders, consisting of Petrobrás Química S.A., or Petroquisa, a subsidiary of Petrobras, and two Brazilian pension funds, have veto and other rights under shareholders agreements as described under Item 7. Major Shareholders and Related Party TransactionsMajor ShareholdersShareholders Agreements. In addition, Petroquisa has an option to purchase up to 30% of our voting share capital, which, if exercised, would give Petroquisa substantial voting and other rights in respect of our company. As a result, the Odebrecht Group, Petroquisa and these other shareholders may have the ability to determine the outcome of major corporate actions or decisions requiring the approval of our shareholders or our board of directors, which could affect the holders of our class A preferred shares and the ADSs.
We may face conflicts of interest in transactions with related parties.
We maintain trade accounts receivable and current and long-term payables with some of our affiliates and other related parties, including Petrobras (which is our sole domestic supplier of naphtha), Copesul in the Southern Complex (which supplies us with ethylene and propylene), and Politeno Indústria e Comércio S.A., or Politeno (which purchases ethylene from our company). Through Petroquisa, Petrobras is the indirect holder of 10.0% of our voting share capital and 8.4% of our total share capital. These accounts receivable and accounts payable balances result mainly from purchases and sales of goods, which are at prices and on terms equivalent to the average terms and prices of transactions that we enter into with third parties. We also engage in financial and other transactions with some of our shareholders, such as the grant of the Petroquisa option discussed above. These and other commercial and financial transactions between us and our affiliates could result in conflicting interests.
Future adjustments in tariffs on imports that compete with our products could cause us to lower our prices.
We take into account, when setting the domestic prices for our products, tariff rates imposed by the Brazilian government on imports of similar products and the products of our customers. We currently benefit
from tariffs that allow us to charge lower prices for our polyolefins and vinyls products than imports of those products. Our margins from sales in the Brazilian market are therefore significantly higher than our margins from exports. However, the Brazilian government has in the past used import and export tariffs to effect economic policies, with the consequence that tariffs can vary considerably, especially tariffs on petrochemical products. For example, in 2004 the Brazilian government lowered the tariffs applicable to most of the thermoplastic products that we produce by 1.5%. Future adjustments of tariffs could cause us to lower our domestic prices, which would likely result in lower net sales revenue and could negatively affect our overall financial performance.
Our business is subject to stringent environmental regulations, and imposition of new regulations could require significant capital expenditures and increase our operating costs.
Our company, like other Brazilian petrochemical producers, is subject to stringent Brazilian federal, state and local environmental laws and regulations concerning human health, the handling and disposal of solid and hazardous wastes and discharges of pollutants into the air and water. Petrochemical producers are sometimes subject to unfavorable market perceptions as a result of the environmental impact of their business, which can have an adverse effect on their results of operations. As environmental laws become more stringent in Brazil and worldwide, the amount and timing of future expenditures required to remain compliant could increase substantially and could decrease the availability of funds for other capital expenditures and other purposes.
We manufacture products that are subject to the risk of fire, explosions and other hazards.
Our operations are subject to hazards, such as fires, explosions and other accidents, associated with the manufacture of petrochemicals and the storage and transportation of feedstocks and petrochemical products. These hazards can cause personal injury and loss of life, severe damage to or destruction of property and equipment and environmental damage. A sufficiently large accident at one of our plants or storage facilities could force us to suspend our operations temporarily and result in significant remediation costs and lost net sales revenue. Although we maintain insurance coverage for losses due to fire damage and for losses of income resulting from shutdowns due to fire, explosion or electrical damage, those insurance proceeds may not be available on a timely basis and may be insufficient to cover all losses.
The Brazilian antitrust authorities could impose costly or restrictive conditions on the approval of the formation of our company.
As part of our corporate reorganization process that began in 2001, we merged with each of OPP Química, Trikem, Proppet S.A., or Proppet, and Nitrocarbono S.A., or Nitrocarbono, and we acquired Polialden. We closed these transactions, as permitted by Brazilian law, subject to the final approval of the Brazilian antitrust authorities. We have submitted the terms and conditions of these transactions to the Brazilian antitrust authorities. These antitrust authorities will determine whether these transactions negatively impact competitive conditions in the markets in which we compete or whether they would negatively affect consumers in these markets. Although two of the three Brazilian antitrust authorities have issued non-binding opinions recommending the unconditional approval of these corporate reorganization transactions, the third and governing antitrust authority continues to review this matter and may disagree with these opinions and impose conditions or performance commitments on our company. Any adverse decision by the Brazilian antitrust authorities could materially adversely affect our business and negatively affect our overall financial performance.
Unfavorable outcomes in pending litigation may reduce our liquidity and negatively affect our financial performance and financial condition.
We are involved in numerous tax, civil and labor disputes involving significant monetary claims. If unfavorable decisions are rendered in one or more of these lawsuits, we could be required to pay substantial amounts, which could materially adversely affect our financial condition and results of operations. For some of these lawsuits, we have not established any provision on our balance sheet or have established provisions only for part of the amounts in question, based on our judgments about the likelihood of winning these lawsuits.
The lawsuits for which we have not established provisions or have established only partial provisions include the following:
In addition, we and some of our subsidiaries believe that our chances of success are remote in a series of lawsuits in which we challenged the constitutionality of an increase in the COFINS tax rate. For a description of the legal bases of these suits, see Item 8. Financial InformationLegal ProceedingsTax Proceedings. We had established total provisions of R$320.6 million at December 31, 2004 for all our lawsuits relating to PIS and COFINS, including separate lawsuits challenging the basis of calculation of PIS and COFINS. Because we have deposited only R$62.5 million of this amount with the courts, we would be required, in the event we and our subsidiaries receive final, unfavorable decisions, to pay the remaining amounts for which we have not made deposits.
We are also parties to a number of lawsuits seeking tax credits that we believe the Brazilian tax authorities have disallowed or limited in violation of the Brazilian Constitution and/or applicable law. In some cases where we have received favorable lower court decisions, we have used these credits to offset other tax obligations and have established provisions in an equivalent amount until a final decision is rendered (adjusting these provisions based on the SELIC (Sistema Especial de Liquidação e de CustódiaSELIC), or SELIC interest rate). These provisions totaled R$904.5 million at December 31, 2004. If we ultimately lose any of these lawsuits, we would be required to pay the tax obligations we had previously offset with those credits, which could materially reduce our liquidity. We believe that losses related to some of these lawsuits are reasonably possible.
For more information about our legal proceedings, see Item 8. Financial InformationLegal Proceedings.
Risks Relating to Our Class A Preferred Shares and the ADSs
Our class A preferred shares and the ADSs have limited voting rights.
Under the Brazilian Corporation Law and our by-laws, holders of our class A preferred shares and, consequently, the ADSs are not entitled to vote at meetings of our shareholders, except in very limited circumstances. These limited circumstances directly relate to key rights of the holders of class A preferred shares, such as modifying basic terms of our class A preferred shares or creating a new class of preferred shares with superior rights. Holders of preferred shares without voting rights are entitled to elect one member and his or her respective alternate to our board of directors and our fiscal council. However, until our general shareholders meeting in 2006, any member elected to our board of directors by these preferred shareholders must be selected from a list of three nominees chosen by our controlling shareholder. Holders of our class A preferred shares and the ADSs are not entitled to vote to approve corporate transactions, including mergers or consolidations of our company with other companies.
Holders of the ADSs may find it difficult to exercise even their limited voting rights at our shareholders meetings.
Holders may exercise the limited voting rights with respect to our class A preferred shares represented by the ADSs only in accordance with the deposit agreement relating to the ADSs. There are practical limitations upon the ability of ADS holders to exercise their voting rights due to the additional steps involved in communicating with ADS holders. For example, we are required to publish a notice of our shareholders meetings in certain newspapers in Brazil. To the extent that holders of our class A preferred shares are entitled to vote at a shareholders meeting, they will be able to exercise their voting rights by attending the meeting in person or voting by proxy. By contrast, holders of the ADSs will receive notice of a shareholders meeting by mail from the depositary following our notice to the ADR depository requesting the ADR depository to do so. To exercise their voting rights, ADS holders must instruct the depositary on a timely basis. This noticed voting process will take longer for ADS holders than for holders of class A preferred shares. If it fails to receive timely voting instructions for all or part of the ADSs, the depositary will assume that the holders of those ADSs are instructing it to give a discretionary proxy to a person designated by us to vote their ADSs, except in limited circumstances.
In the limited circumstances in which holders of the ADSs have voting rights, they may not receive the voting materials in time to instruct the depositary to vote our class A preferred shares underlying their ADSs. In addition, the depositary and its agents are not responsible for failing to carry out voting instructions of the holders of the ADSs or for the manner of carrying out those voting instructions. Accordingly, holders of the ADSs may not be able to exercise voting rights, and they will have no recourse if the class A preferred shares underlying their ADSs are not voted as requested.
Exchange controls and restrictions on remittances abroad may adversely affect holders of the ADSs and the underlying class A preferred shares.
Brazilian law provides that whenever there is a significant imbalance in Brazils balance of payments or a significant possibility that such imbalance will exist, the Brazilian government may impose temporary restrictions on the remittance to foreign investors of the proceeds of their investment in Brazil (as it did for approximately six months in 1989 and early 1990) and on the conversion of Brazilian currency into foreign currencies. These restrictions could hinder or prevent the Brazilian custodian of the class A preferred shares underlying the ADSs or holders who have exchanged the ADSs for the underlying class A preferred shares from converting dividends, distributions or the proceeds from any sale of such shares into U.S. dollars and remitting such U.S. dollars abroad. In such an event, the Brazilian custodian for our class A preferred shares will hold the reais that it cannot convert for the account of holders of the ADSs who have not been paid. Neither the custodian nor the depositary will be required to invest the reais or be liable for any interest.
Holders of the ADSs may face difficulties in protecting their interests because we are subject to different corporate rules and regulations as a Brazilian company and our shareholders may have fewer and less well-defined rights.
Holders of the ADSs are not direct shareholders of our company and are unable to enforce the rights of shareholders under our by-laws and the Brazilian Corporation Law.
Our corporate affairs are governed by our by-laws and the Brazilian Corporation Law, which differ from the legal principles that would apply if we were incorporated in a jurisdiction in the United States, such as the State of Delaware or New York, or elsewhere outside Brazil. Even if a holder of ADSs surrenders its ADSs and becomes a direct shareholder, its rights as a holder of our class A preferred shares underlying the ADSs under the Brazilian Corporation Law to protect its interests relative to actions by our board of directors may be fewer and less well-defined than under the laws of those other jurisdictions.
Although insider trading and price manipulation are crimes under Brazilian law, the Brazilian securities markets are not as highly regulated and supervised as the U.S. securities markets or the markets in some other jurisdictions. In addition, rules and policies against self-dealing or for preserving shareholder interests may be less well-defined and enforced in Brazil than in the United States and certain other countries, which may put holders of our class A preferred shares and the ADSs at a potential disadvantage. Corporate disclosures also may be less complete or informative than for a public company in the United States or in certain other countries.
Holders of the ADSs may face difficulties in serving process on or enforcing judgments against us and other persons.
We are a corporation (sociedade anônima) organized under the laws of Brazil, and all of our directors and executive officers and our independent public accountants reside or are based in Brazil. Most of our assets and those of these other persons are located in Brazil. As a result, it may not be possible for holders of the ADSs to effect service of process upon us or these other persons within the United States or other jurisdictions outside Brazil or to enforce against us or these other persons judgments obtained in the United States or other jurisdictions outside Brazil. Because judgments of U.S. courts for civil liabilities based upon the U.S. federal securities laws may only be enforced in Brazil if certain conditions are met, holders may face greater difficulties in protecting their interests in the case of actions by us or our directors or executive officers than would shareholders of a U.S. corporation.
Actual or anticipated sales of a substantial number of class A preferred shares could decrease the market prices of our class A preferred shares and the ADSs.
Sales of a substantial number of our class A preferred shares could negatively affect the market prices of our class A preferred shares and the ADSs. On or prior to December 31, 2005, Petroquisa is entitled to exercise an option to acquire a substantial number of new common shares from our company and, if necessary, preferred shares from the Odebrecht Group. If, in the future, substantial sales of shares are made by the Odebrecht Group, Petroquisa or other existing or future holders of class A preferred shares, the market price of our class A preferred shares and, by extension, the ADSs may decrease significantly. As a result, holders of the ADSs may not be able to sell the ADSs at or above the price they paid for them.
Holders of the ADSs may be unable to exercise preemptive rights with respect to our class A preferred shares underlying the ADSs.
Holders of the ADSs will be unable to exercise the preemptive rights relating to our class A preferred shares underlying ADSs unless a registration statement under the Securities Act is effective with respect to those rights or an exemption from the registration requirements of the Securities Act is available. We are not obligated to file a registration statement with respect to the shares relating to these preemptive rights or to take any other action to make preemptive rights available to holders of the ADSs, and we may not file any such registration statement. If
we do not file a registration statement or if we and the depositary decide not to make preemptive rights available to holders of the ADSs, those holders may receive only the net proceeds from the sale of their preemptive rights by the depositary, or if they are not sold, their preemptive rights will be allowed to lapse.
Holders of the ADSs could be subject to Brazilian income tax on capital gains from sales of ADSs.
Historically, any capital gain realized on a sale or other disposition of ADSs between non-Brazilian holders outside Brazil was not subject to Brazilian income tax. However, a new Brazilian law provides that, commencing on February 1, 2004, the acquiror, individual or legal entity resident or domiciled in Brazil, or the acquirors attorney-in-fact, when such acquirer is resident or domiciled abroad, shall be responsible for the retention and payment of the income tax applicable to capital gains . . . earned by the individual or legal entity resident or domiciled abroad who disposes of property located in Brazil. The Brazilian tax authorities have recently issued a normative instruction confirming that they intend to assess income tax on capital gains earned by non-Brazilian residents whose assets are located in Brazil. In our view, ADSs representing class A preferred shares, which are issued by the depositary outside Brazil, will not be deemed to be property located in Brazil for purposes of this law. However, we cannot assure holders of our ADSs whether Brazilian tax authorities will attempt to tax any capital gains arising from the sale or other disposition of ADSs, even when the transaction is consummated outside Brazil between non-Brazilian residents.
The relative volatility and liquidity of the Brazilian securities markets may decrease the liquidity and market price of our class A preferred shares and the ADSs.
The Brazilian securities markets are substantially smaller, less liquid and more volatile than major securities markets in the United States. The São Paulo Stock Exchange, which is the principal Brazilian stock exchange, had a market capitalization of US$340.9 billion (or R$904.9 billion) at December 31, 2004 and an average daily trading volume of US$419.7 million for 2004. In comparison, The New York Stock Exchange had a market capitalization of US$19.8 trillion at December 31, 2004 and an average daily trading volume of US$46.1 billion for 2004. There is also significantly greater concentration in the Brazilian securities markets. The ten largest companies in terms of market capitalization represented approximately 47% of the aggregate market capitalization of the São Paulo Stock Exchange at December 31, 2004. The ten most widely traded stocks in terms of trading volume accounted for approximately 48% of all shares traded on The São Paulo Stock Exchange in 2004. These market characteristics may substantially limit the ability of holders of the ADSs to sell class A preferred shares underlying ADSs at a price and at a time when they wish to do so and, as a result, could negatively impact the market price of the ADSs themselves.
Developments in other emerging markets may decrease the market price of our class A preferred shares and the ADSs.
The market price of the ADSs may decrease due to declines in the international financial markets and world economic conditions. Although economic conditions are different in each country, investors reaction to developments in one country can affect the securities markets and the securities of issuers in other countries, including Brazil. Brazilian securities markets are, to varying degrees, influenced by economic and market conditions in other emerging market countries, especially those in Latin America. Any return to economic turmoil in Argentina or adverse economic developments in other emerging markets may adversely affect investor confidence in securities issued by Brazilian companies, causing their market price and liquidity to suffer. Any such developments could immediately affect our ability to raise capital when needed and the market price of our class A preferred shares and the ADSs.
ITEM 4. INFORMATION ON OUR COMPANY
We are the leading petrochemical company in Latin America, based on average annual production capacity. We are also one of the three largest Brazilian-owned private sector industrial companies, based on net sales revenue. We recorded net income of R$690.9 million in 2004 on net sales revenue of R$12,192.0 million, in each case under Brazilian GAAP. We produce a diversified portfolio of petrochemical products and have a strategic focus on polyethylene, polypropylene and PVC. We have integrated first and second generation petrochemical production facilities, with 13 plants in Brazil.
HISTORY AND DEVELOPMENT OF OUR COMPANY
We were founded in 1972 as Petroquímica do Nordeste Copene Ltda. to plan, execute and coordinate the activities of the Northeastern Complex. The construction of the Northeastern Complex formed part of a development policy of the Brazilian government implemented in the early 1970s to diversify the geographical distribution of industrial assets and to promote economic growth across different regions of Brazil. On June 18, 1974, we were incorporated as a corporation (sociedade anônima) under the laws of Brazil (with Brazilian company registry No. 29300006939) and were renamed CopenePetroquímica do Nordeste S.A.
Acquisition of Control by Norquisa
Prior to August 1995, Petroquisa, the petrochemical subsidiary of Petrobras, owned 36.2% of our total share capital, representing 48.2% of our voting share capital. Petrobras historically provided all of our requirements of naphtha, our principal raw material. At that time, Norquisa owned 17.3% of our total share capital, representing 47.6% of our voting share capital, and the remainder of our share capital was owned by various Brazilian private sector groups, pension funds, banks and our employees. Norquisa is a holding company that was formed in 1980 for the purpose of holding shares of the petrochemical companies in the Northeastern Complex.
In August 1995, as part of the Brazilian governments privatization program, Petroquisa sold 14.8% of our total share capital, representing 32.8% of our voting share capital, through an auction. Norquisa acquired 5.5% of our total share capital, representing 10.8% of our voting share capital, in this auction for R$79.2 million, and the remaining shares were acquired by various Brazilian pension funds.
At the time of this auction, Norquisa was controlled by several second generation producers in the Northeastern Complex. These companies, in turn, were controlled by several groups involved in the petrochemical business in Brazil. The owners of Norquisas voting share capital immediately before and after this auction were as follows:
Following this auction, our corporate structure was as set forth in the following chart. The percentages in bold italics represent the percentage of the voting share capital owned directly and indirectly by the parent company of each entity, and the percentages not in bold italics represent the percentage of the total share capital owned directly and indirectly by the parent company of each entity. All of these companies are or were organized under Brazilian law.
Econômico S.A. Empreendimentos Auction and Related Transactions
Late in 1995, a Brazilian financial institution, Banco Econômico S.A., or Banco Econômico, collapsed, at which time the Central Bank intervened. Banco Econômico then held a 63.8% of the voting share capital of
ConeparCompanhia Nordeste de Participações, or Conepar, which, in turn, held 66.7% of the voting share capital of Polialden and 35.0% of the voting share capital of Politeno.
The Brazilian government decided to liquidate the petrochemical assets of Banco Econômico as part of a broader initiative to restructure the Brazilian petrochemical sector. The Central Bank, as liquidator of Banco Econômico, formed Econômico S.A. Empreendimentos to hold the share capital of Conepar owned by Banco Econômico and then conducted an auction of Econômico S.A. Empreendimentos on July 25, 2001.
Immediately prior to this auction, the corporate structure of Econômico S.A. Empreendimentos and Conepar was as set forth in the following chart. The percentages in bold italics represent the percentage of the voting share capital owned directly and indirectly by the parent company of each entity, and the percentages not in bold italics represent the percentage of the total share capital owned directly and indirectly by the parent company of each entity. All of these companies are or were organized under Brazilian law.
In order to increase its investment in the Brazilian petrochemical industry, the Odebrecht Group formed Nova Camaçari Participações S.A., or Nova Camaçari, for the purpose of participating in the auction. Nova
Camaçari placed the winning bid in the auction and acquired Econômico S.A. Empreendimentos for R$785.0 million. On the same date, Nova Camaçari and the Odebrecht Group entered into the following transactions:
Nova Camaçari was obligated to purchase the shares of Intercapital and Proppet, and the shares of Conepar owned by BNDESPAR, under the terms of various shareholders agreements entered into by the direct and indirect shareholders of Conepar. The Odebrecht Group purchased the Norquisa shares held by Petronor in order to increase its percentage ownership of Norquisa. We acquired Nova Camaçari in order to expand the scope of our operations and become a vertically integrated producer of petrochemical products.
As a result of these transactions, we acquired ownership, directly and indirectly, of 100% of the share capital of Conepar and of Proppet, and, through Conepar, we acquired a controlling interest in Polialden and a minority interest in Politeno. We remained controlled by Norquisa. The Odebrecht Group owned 39.7% of the voting share capital of Norquisa and, together with the Mariani Group, held a combined 55.8% of the voting share capital of Norquisa.
On July 27, 2001, Odebrecht Química S.A., or Odebrecht Química, and Petroquímica da Bahia S.A., or Petroquímica da Bahia, a member of the Mariani Group, entered into a shareholders agreement covering their direct and indirect equity interests in Norquisa and our company. In addition, on July 3, 2001 and July 20, 2001, Odebrecht Química and Petroquímica da Bahia entered into memoranda of understanding with respect to the terms of shareholders agreements to be entered into with Petroquisa, PREVICaixa de Previdência dos Funcionários do Banco de Brasil, or Previ, and Fundação de Sequridade SocialPetros, or Petros. These agreements are described in Item 7. Major Shareholders and Related Party TransactionsMajor ShareholdersShareholders Agreements.
Immediately after these transactions, our corporate structure was as set forth in the following chart. The percentages in bold italics represent the percentage of the voting share capital owned directly and indirectly by the parent company of each entity, and the percentages not in bold italics represent the percentage of the total share capital owned directly and indirectly by the parent company of each entity. All of these companies are or were organized under Brazilian law.
In order to streamline our corporate structure, in September 2001, we merged our wholly owned subsidiaries Nova Camaçari, Intercapital and Proppet into our company.
The following chart presents the corporate structure of our principal subsidiaries and equity investments following this merger. The percentages in bold italics represent the percentage of the voting share capital owned directly and indirectly by the parent company of each entity, and the percentages not in bold italics represent the percentage of the total share capital owned directly and indirectly by the parent company of each entity. All of these companies are or were organized under Brazilian law.
Mergers with OPP Produtos and 52114 Participações
In order to continue to implement our strategy of vertically integrating our operations and to further expand the scope of our operations, we completed the following transactions on August 16, 2002:
Upon completing these mergers, we changed our corporate name to Braskem S.A.
The principal assets of OPP Produtos were:
The principal asset of 52114 Participações was 92.3% of the total share capital of Nitrocarbono, representing 95.5% of its voting share capital.
The following chart presents the corporate structure of our principal subsidiaries and equity investments following the transactions described above. The percentages in bold italics represent the percentage of the voting share capital owned directly and indirectly by the parent company of each entity, and the percentages not in bold italics represent the percentage of the total share capital owned directly and indirectly by the parent company of each entity. All of these companies are or were organized under Brazilian law.
Transactions in 2003 and 2004
Since August 2002, we have completed additional transactions to consolidate our ownership of some of our subsidiaries and further streamline our corporate structure.
Acquisition of Remaining Shares of OPP Química
In October 2002, Odebrecht Química acquired 2.5% of OPP Químicas total share capital from Braskem International Limited for US$16.3 million. In December 2002, in connection with the repayment of a financing transaction, a lender returned 16.2% of OPP Químicas share capital to Odebrecht Química. Consequently, Odebrecht Química then owned all of OPP Químicas total share capital.
Exchange Offer for Remaining Shares of Nitrocarbono and Subsidiary Mergers
In February 2003, as a result of our merger with 52114 Participações and as required by the Brazilian Corporation Law, we commenced a public exchange offer for the remaining voting share capital of Nitrocarbono not owned by our company. On February 13, 2003, immediately following our exchange of the shares tendered in this exchange offer for 128,973 of our class A preferred shares, we owned 93.8% of the total share capital of Nitrocarbono, including 99.99% of its voting share capital.
On March 31, 2003, we consummated the following transactions:
Immediately after these transactions, our corporate structure was as set forth in the following chart. The percentages in bold italics represent the percentage of the voting share capital owned directly and indirectly by the parent company of each entity, and the percentages not in bold italics represent the percentage of the total share capital owned directly and indirectly by the parent company of each entity. All of these companies are or were organized under Brazilian law.
Transfer of Polialden and Politeno Shares to Our Company
To further streamline our corporate structure, on June 30, 2003, we entered into an agreement under which we assumed debt of Copene Participações S.A. owed to Polialden in the amount of R$30.2 million as well as debt of Copene Participações S.A. owed to the BNDES in the amount of R$38.9 million. In return, we received the shares of Polialden and Politeno owned by Copene Participações S.A. As a result, all of our equity interests in Polialden and Politeno were, and continue to be, held directly by our company, and Copene Participações S.A. no longer owns material assets or conducts any material operations.
Acquisition of Common Shares of Trikem and Polialden Held by Mitsubishi and Sojitz
In order to acquire the remaining outstanding common shares of Polialden and substantially all of the remaining outstanding common shares of Trikem, on July 14, 2003, we entered into (1) a share purchase and sale agreement with Odebrecht and Mitsubishi Chemical Corporation, or Mitsubishi, and (2) a memorandum of understanding with Odebrecht and Sojitz Holdings Corporation, or Sojitz (formerly known as Nissho Iwai-Nichimen Holdings). Under the share purchase and sale agreement, Mitsubishi agreed to sell to us all of the share capital of Trikem and Polialden it owned, consisting of 16.7% of Polialdens voting share capital and 13.4% of Trikems voting share capital for R$44.2 million. We paid a portion of the purchase price in cash, and we are obligated to pay the remaining US$13.5 million to Mitsubishi on July 31, 2007, or earlier if before that date we meet certain financial tests, including specified net debt to EBITDA and short-term debt to EBITDA
ratios. In addition, we are required to pay interest to Mitsubishi on the outstanding balance of the aggregate purchase price at an annual rate of LIBOR plus 3.0% in January and July of each year until the remaining balance is paid in full.
Under this agreement, we are required to make an additional payment to Mitsubishi in an amount that is contingent upon the outcome of pending litigation filed against Polialden by certain of its preferred shareholders.
The amount of the additional payment that we are obligated to pay to Mitsubishi is (1) R$21.6 million if Polialden prevails in this litigation or if a definitive settlement is reached, or (2) R$5.4 million if Polialden loses this litigation. In either event, we will convert the amount of this additional payment (as adjusted for inflation at the IGP-M rate from July 31, 2003 until the date that this litigation is finally adjudicated or settled) into U.S. dollars on the final adjudication or settlement date. We are required to make this additional payment either together with the remaining balance under the share purchase and sale agreement or, if the remaining balance is due prior to the date on which this litigation is finally adjudicated or settled, within 60 days from the later date. We will pay interest on this payment on the same terms as we are required to pay interest on the remaining balance under the share purchase and sale agreement.
Odebrecht has agreed to guarantee our obligation to pay Mitsubishi the remaining balance of the aggregate purchase price, together with the additional payment in connection with the Polialden shareholders rights litigation.
Under the memorandum of understanding with Odebrecht and Sojitz, we agreed to purchase all of the share capital of Trikem and Polialden that Sojitz owned, consisting of 16.7% of Polialdens voting share capital and 10.1% of Trikems voting share capital, in exchange for 4,345,162 of our common shares. As a result of this transaction, which closed on July 31, 2003, and after giving effect to the purchase from Mitsubishi described above, we increased our direct and indirect ownership of Trikems voting share capital to 87.9% and increased our ownership of Polialdens voting share capital to 100%.
Immediately after these transactions, our corporate structure was as set forth in the following chart. The percentages in bold italics represent the percentage of the voting share capital owned directly and indirectly by the parent company of each entity, and the percentages not in bold italics represent the percentage of the total share capital owned directly and indirectly by the parent company of each entity. All of these companies are or were organized under Brazilian law.
Merger of Trikem into Braskem
On November 3, 2003, as a result of the increase of our holdings of Trikem and as required by the Brazilian Corporation Law, we commenced a public exchange offer for the remaining voting share capital of Trikem not owned by our company. On December 4, 2003, immediately following our exchange of the shares tendered in this exchange offer for 1,753,080 of our class A preferred shares, we owned, directly and indirectly, 53.8% of Trikems total share capital, including 99.9% of its voting share capital.
In order to facilitate the merger of Trikem into our company, on January 12, 2004, Odebrecht Química spun off the share capital of Trikem held by it to our company. Following this spin-off, Odebrecht Química no longer owned material assets or conducts any material operations. Odebrecht Química merged into our company on March 31, 2005.
On January 15, 2004, Trikem merged with and into our company. In connection with this merger, we issued 592 of our class A preferred shares in exchange for 514,366 of Trikems common shares and 32,544,069 of our class A preferred shares in exchange for 28,260,456,441 of Trikems preferred shares.
At an extraordinary shareholders meeting on January 15, 2004, our shareholders approved our merger with Trikem, an amendment to our by-laws to permit the conversion of our class A preferred shares into common shares upon the approval of the majority of our voting share capital, and the conversion of 487,793 of our class A preferred shares into 487,793 of our common shares in order to maintain the required minimum ratio of our common shares to preferred shares in accordance with the Brazilian Corporation Law after completion of the merger with Trikem.
Exchange of Polialden Shares for Our Class A Preferred Shares
On December 15, 2004, we exchanged 2,020,201 of our class A preferred shares which were held in our treasury for 47,846,610 preferred shares issued by Polialden held by certain of the shareholders of Polialden. The shareholders of Polialden participating in this exchange were parties to suits brought against Polialden claiming, among other things, that certain dividends were owed to these shareholders. In connection with the exchange of shares, these claims were relinquished by the Polialden shareholders participating in the exchange. As a result of this exchange, we increased our interest in the total share capital of Polialden from 56.3% to 63.7%.
Current Corporate Structure
The following chart presents the corporate structure of our principal subsidiaries and equity investments following the transactions described above. The percentages in bold italics represent the percentage of the voting share capital owned directly and indirectly by the parent company of each entity, and the percentages not in bold italics represent the percentage of the total share capital owned directly and indirectly by the parent company of each entity. All of these companies are organized under Brazilian law.
Our Principal Subsidiary and Jointly Controlled Companies
Our principal subsidiary is Polialden. In addition, our equity investments in Copesul and Politeno have a significant impact on our consolidated and combined financial statements. The following is a summary of our equity investments in these companies and the shareholders agreements we have signed with respect to Copesul and Politeno.
Polialden is a corporation (sociedade anônima) organized under the laws of Brazil. At December 31, 2004, we indirectly owned all of the voting share capital and 63.7% of the total share capital of Polialden. Polialden is engaged in the manufacturing, processing, selling, importing and exporting of high-density polyethylene, ultra high molecular weight polyethylene and other chemical and petrochemical products. Polialden operates its industrial unit in the Northeastern Complex. For information concerning these operations, see Polyolefins Unit.
Copesul is a corporation (sociedade anônima) organized under the laws of Brazil. At December 31, 2004, we owned, directly and indirectly, 29.5% of the voting and total share capital of Copesul. Copesul is the second largest petrochemical cracker in Brazil based on production capacity, with approximately 39% of Brazilian production capacity of ethylene. We provide more information about Copesuls business in Jointly Controlled CompaniesCopesul.
We have entered into a shareholders agreement with Ipiranga Petroquímica S.A., or Ipiranga, relating to our shares of Copesul. Ipiranga owns 29.5% of the voting and total share capital of Copesul. Under the Copesul shareholders agreement, we and Ipiranga jointly control Copesul. We have agreed to consult with Ipiranga prior to any meeting of Copesuls board of directors or shareholders and to vote our shares together with Ipiranga on specified matters, including policies relating to the allocation of excess amounts of raw materials, policies relating to the distribution of profits, the election of members to Copesuls board of directors, amendments to
Copesuls by-laws, approval of indebtedness of Copesul in excess of certain limits, sales of assets in excess of specified limits, investments in excess of certain limits and the merger of Copesul with another company. We have also agreed that neither we nor Ipiranga will vote to approve any of the above matters unless we and Ipiranga vote 75% of the shares collectively held by us in favor of that action at a meeting between Ipiranga and our company or, if no quorum is obtained at such a meeting, of 75% of the shares present at a second meeting called for this purpose.
The Copesul shareholders agreement also provides a right of first refusal for transfers or sales of the voting share capital of Copesul to third parties, except for transfers and sales of Copesul voting share capital to companies directly or indirectly controlled by the selling shareholder. Third-party purchasers of common shares of Copesul from our company or Ipiranga also must agree to comply with the Copesul shareholders agreement. The shareholders agreement also includes provisions designed to ensure that each of our company and Ipiranga will continue to own the same proportion of shares of Copesul if it so elects.
The Copesul shareholders agreement provides that we will vote with Ipiranga in a manner designed to ensure that both we and Ipiranga are able to elect the maximum possible number of members of Copesuls board of directors. The shareholders agreement is effective until August 2022. We have agreed with Ipiranga not to enter into another shareholders agreement regarding Copesul with any other shareholders of Copesul.
Politeno is a corporation (sociedade anônima) organized under the laws of Brazil. At December 31, 2004, we owned 34.0% of Politenos total share capital, including 35.0% of its voting share capital. Politeno produces polyethylenes, which are widely used in the flexible and rigid packaging industries. Politeno produces low density polyethylene, or LDPE, medium density polyethylene, high density polyethylene, or HDPE, linear low density polyethylene, or LLDPE, linear medium density polyethylene, ethyl vinyl acetate copolymer and other special resins. We provide more information about Politenos business in Jointly Controlled CompaniesPoliteno.
Through Conepar, we have entered into a shareholders agreement with Suzano Petroquímica S.A., or Suzano, Sumitomo Chemical Company Limited and Itochu Corporation with respect to our shares of Politeno. Suzano owns 33.9% of Politenos total share capital, including 35.0% of its voting share capital; Sumitomo Chemical Company Limited owns 18.9% of Politenos total share capital, including 20.0% of its voting share capital; and Itochu Corporation owns 9.4% of Politenos total share capital, including 10.0% of its voting share capital. The Politeno shareholders agreement contains provisions governing voting, transfer and preemptive rights. We have the right to elect two of the seven members of Politenos board of directors and the right to elect an additional member of Politenos board of directors in alternating years. We also have the right to elect one of the six executive officers.
We have agreed in the Politeno shareholders agreement to attempt to reach unanimous decisions with the other parties with respect to certain actions to be taken by Politenos board of directors or shareholders, including: changes to Politenos by-laws, subject to certain exceptions; Politenos dissolution or liquidation; the merger of Politeno with another company; certain transactions with holders of Politenos common shares; transactions involving the purchase, sale, assignment or encumbrance of fixed assets of Politeno in excess of specified amounts; and Politenos incurrence of secured indebtedness in excess of certain specified levels. The parties to the shareholders agreement also granted each other certain rights of first refusal and agreed not to encumber their shares of Politeno without the consent of parties representing at least 50% of Politenos issued and outstanding common shares, subject to certain exceptions. Third-party purchasers of common shares of Politeno from any of the parties to the shareholders agreement also must agree to comply with its terms.
We also have equity interests in other companies, including Petroflex Indústria e Comércio S.A., or Petroflex, and Borealis Brasil S.A., or Borealis, for which we have entered into shareholders agreements that include provisions governing voting, transfer and preemptive rights.
Our capital expenditures on property, plant and equipment were R$432.3 million in 2004, R$214.7 million in 2003 and R$419.9 million in 2002. Additionally, our investments in interests in other companies were R$23.6 million in 2004, R$71.7 million in 2003 and R$13.1 million (excluding cash acquired of R$4.1 million) in 2002. Our principal capital expenditures projects during 2002 through 2004 were:
In 2004, we began implementation of our Braskem + program. This program identifies 218 specific initiatives, each with its own performance goals and implementation schedule. At December 31, 2004, we had made capital expenditures of R$23.5 million related to the implementation of this program and anticipate that this program will require us to make additional capital expenditures of approximately R$241.7 million through 2007, including R$124.2 million in 2005.
On June 22, 2005, our board of directors and the board of directors of Petroquisa approved the creation of a joint venture between our companies for the construction and operation of a polypropylene plant to be located in Paulínia, in the State of São Paulo, with an annual production capacity of approximately 300,000 tons. Our board of directors also approved (1) the results of a detailed feasibility study of the project and (2) the creation of a new company together with Petroquisa, which company will execute the project. The principal terms of this joint venture provide that:
Our ability to compete in the Brazilian and foreign markets that we serve depends on our ability to integrate new production processes developed by our company and third parties in order to lower our costs and offer new thermoplastic products. In addition, our relationships with our customers are enhanced by our ability to develop new products and customize existing products to meet their needs. To meet these challenges, we maintain a research and development program that is primarily implemented at the Braskem Center for Innovation and Technology in the Southern Complex. We invested R$59.2 million, R$35.5 million and R$20.1 million in research and development during 2004, 2003 and 2002, respectively.
We currently are budgeting total capital expenditures of approximately R$842.2 million for 2005. Our principal capital expenditures for 2005 consist of, in addition to the projects referred to in the preceding paragraphs, approximately R$166.3 million for health, environmental and quality improvement projects, approximately R$110.1 million for the replacement of depreciated equipment, approximately R$114.9 million for productivity improvements and approximately R$153.1 million for plant modernization and information systems.
We are currently evaluating projects that could entail significant capital expenditures in the future.
Most of our maintenance is performed by third-party service providers. For example, we have contracts with Construtora Norberto Odebrecht S.A., a company in the Odebrecht Group, Asea Brown Boveri Ltd. and other service providers to perform maintenance for our Basic Petrochemicals Unit and our Business Development Unit. We also perform some of our ordinary course maintenance with our small team of maintenance technicians, which also coordinate the planning and execution of maintenance services performed by third parties.
Because we have two independent Olefins units and two independent Aromatics units, we may continue production of basic petrochemicals without interruption, even while we perform certain maintenance services. We occasionally undertake other brief shutdowns of our operations that do not materially affect our production output, primarily for maintenance purposes, catalyst regeneration and equipment cleaning.
Regular basic petrochemicals plant maintenance requires complete plant shutdowns from time to time, and these shutdowns usually take approximately 30 days to complete. Since commencing operations in July 1978, our largest basic petrochemicals plant (Olefins 1) has undergone seven scheduled major maintenance services as part of our regular maintenance activities. The last general maintenance shutdown of our Olefins 1 unit was carried out in July and August 2001 and lasted for 25 days. This shutdown permitted inspection and maintenance of this unit, which had been operational for almost five years without a shutdown. This shutdown was intended to
improve the plants efficiency and production capacity. The cost of servicing the unit was approximately US$15 million (not including the value of lost production during this shutdown). The next general shutdown of our Olefins 1 unit has been scheduled for 2007 with an estimated duration of approximately 30 days.
In 2002, we shut down our Olefins 1 unit for 92 days in order to increase its production capacity and to modernize and upgrade its technology. This shutdown reduced our Basic Petrochemical Units ethylene and propylene production in 2002. The cost of these improvements to this Unit was approximately US$61 million (not including lost production).
The last general maintenance shutdown of our Aromatics 2 and Olefins 2 units (which form part of the same basic petrochemicals facility) was carried out in January and February 2004 and lasted 36 days. This shutdown permitted inspection and maintenance of this unit, which had been operational for almost seven years without a shutdown. This shutdown was intended to improve the plants efficiency and production capacity. In addition, we implemented various improvements to ensure the reliability and continuous operation of these units and to minimize the environmental impact of our operations. The cost of servicing this unit was approximately R$89 million (not including the value of lost production during this shutdown). The next general shutdown of our Aromatics 2 and Olefins 2 units has been scheduled for 2009 with an estimated duration of approximately 35 days.
The last general maintenance shutdown of our Aromatics 1 unit was carried out in May 2004 and lasted 40 days. This shutdown permitted inspection and maintenance of this unit, which had been operational for three years without a shutdown. This shutdown was also intended to improve the efficiency and production capacity of the plants in this unit and resulted in the development of new solvents and substantial growth in our production of aromatics, including an increase of our para-xylene production capacity by 50,000 tons. The cost of servicing this unit was approximately R$21 million (not including the value of lost production during this shutdown). The next general shutdown of our Aromatics 1 unit has been scheduled for 2008 with an estimated duration of approximately 30 days.
We have a regular maintenance program for each of our polyolefins plants. Production at each of our polyolefins plants generally is shut down for 15 to 20 days every two years to allow for regular inspection and maintenance. In addition, we undertake other brief shutdowns for maintenance purposes that do not materially affect our production of polyolefins. We coordinate the maintenance cycles of our polyolefins plants with those of our basic petrochemicals plants. While our basic petrochemicals facilities must be shut down for up to 30 days for maintenance, our polyolefins facilities may be shut down for shorter periods because these facilities are less complex to operate and maintain than our basic petrochemicals facilities.
We have a regular maintenance program for each of our vinyls plants. Our Camaçari and Alagoas PVC plants are generally shut down for 20 days every two years to allow for regular inspection and maintenance. The last general maintenance shutdown of our PVC plant in Camaçari was carried out in January 2004 and lasted for 14 days. The next general maintenance shutdown of this plant is scheduled for August 2005. The last general maintenance shutdown of our PVC plant in Alagoas was carried out in December 2004 and lasted for 16 days. The next general maintenance shutdown of this plant is scheduled for 2006. Our São Paulo PVC plant generally shuts down for five days of maintenance each year. Our caustic soda and chlorine plant in Alagoas generally shuts down for 15 days of maintenance every two years. The last general maintenance shutdown of this plant was carried out in March 2004 and lasted for 12 days. The next general maintenance shutdown of this plant is scheduled for 2006. Our caustic soda and chlorine plant in Camaçari does not require prolonged maintenance shutdowns and is shut down for two or three days each year.
Regular maintenance of our Business Development Unit plants usually requires plant shutdowns every two years that take approximately 20 days to complete. The last general maintenance shutdown of our caprolactam plant was carried out in March 2003 and lasted 20 days. During this maintenance shutdown, we also changed certain production equipment caprolactam, which (together with other measures that we have adopted) we
anticipate will extend the periods between general maintenance shut downs of this plant from two to three years. The cost of the last maintenance shutdown was approximately US$2.5 million (not including lost production value). The next general maintenance shutdown of this plant is scheduled for August 2005. The last general maintenance shutdown of our Business Development Units DMT and PET plant was carried out in April 2005 and lasted for 27 days. The cost of this shutdown was R$10.9 million (not including lost production value). Prior to this general maintenance shutdown, the last general maintenance shutdown of our DMT and PET plants in June 2003, during which we successfully upgraded the PET plants reactor, resulting in resin quality improvements as well as increasing the plants annual production capacity from 60,000 tons to 70,000 tons. We also implemented operational improvements in our PET plant in 2004, which further increased the plants annual production capacity from 70,000 tons to 78,000 tons. The next general maintenance shutdown of our PET and DMT plants is scheduled for April 2007.
Petrochemical Industry Overview
The petrochemical industry transforms crude oil by-products, principally naphtha, or natural gas into widely used industrial and consumer goods. The Brazilian petrochemical industry is generally organized into first, second and third generation producers based on the stage of transformation of various petrochemical raw materials, or feedstocks.
First Generation Producers
Brazils first generation producers, which are referred to as crackers, break down or crack naphtha, their principal feedstock, into basic petrochemicals. The crackers purchase their naphtha, which is a by-product of the oil refining process, primarily from Petrobras, as well as from other suppliers located outside of Brazil. The basic petrochemicals produced by the crackers include:
We, Copesul and Petroquímica União S.A. operate Brazils three crackers and sell basic petrochemicals to second generation producers, including, in our case, second generation producers that are part of our company. A fourth petrochemical cracker commenced operation on June 23, 2005. The basic petrochemicals, which are in gaseous or liquid form, are transported primarily via pipelines to the second generation producers plants, generally located near the crackers, for further processing.
Second Generation Producers
Second generation producers process the basic petrochemicals obtained from the crackers to produce intermediate petrochemicals. These intermediate petrochemicals include:
There are 45 second generation producers operating in Brazil. Intermediate petrochemicals are produced in solid form as plastic pellets or powders and are transported primarily by truck to third generation producers, which generally are located far from the second generation producers.
Third Generation Producers
Third generation producers, known as transformers, purchase the intermediate petrochemicals from second generation producers and transform them into final products including:
Third generation producers manufacture a variety of consumer and industrial goods, including containers and packaging materials, such as bags, film and bottles, textiles, detergents, paints, automobile parts, toys and consumer electronic goods. There are over 6,000 third generation producers operating in Brazil.
The production of first and second generation petrochemicals in Brazil centers around three major complexes. These complexes include:
Each complex has a single first generation producer, also known as the raw materials center, and several second generation producers that purchase feedstock from the raw materials center.
The Northeastern Complex began operations in 1978. The Northeastern Complex consists of 28 second generation producers situated around the raw materials center operated by our company. At December 31, 2004, our raw materials center had an annual ethylene production capacity of 1,280,000 tons, which we estimate accounted for approximately 44% of Brazils ethylene production capacity.
The Southern Complex began operations in 1982. Copesul, in which we have a 29.5% equity interest, is the raw materials center at the Southern Complex and supplies first generation petrochemicals to six second generation producers, including our Polyolefins Unit. At December 31, 2004, Copesul had an annual ethylene production capacity of 1,135,000 tons.
The São Paulo Complex, which is the oldest petrochemical complex in Brazil, began operations in 1972. Petroquímica União is the raw materials center at the São Paulo Complex and supplies first generation petrochemicals to 11 second generation producers, including our company. At December 31, 2004, Petroquímica União had an annual ethylene production capacity of 500,000 tons.
A fourth petrochemical complex has been constructed at Duque de Caxias in the State of Rio de Janeiro. Rio Polímeros, a Brazilian petrochemical company, will serve as the cracker for the new complex and has announced that the new petrochemical complex will be an integrated first and second generation producer with an annual production capacity of 520,000 tons of ethylene, 75,000 tons of propylene and 540,000 tons of polyethylene (LLDPE and HDPE). This plant will use natural gas as a feedstock, and Rio Polímeros commenced operation on June 23, 2005.
Role of the Brazilian Government
The current structure of the Brazilian petrochemical industry reflects the Brazilian governments plan, developed during the 1970s, to establish a domestic petrochemical industry to serve Brazilian markets. First and second generation producers, including our company, are located within close proximity of each other to allow the common use of facilities, such as utilities, and to facilitate the delivery of feedstocks. Prior to their privatization by the Brazilian government, the expansion of production capacity at the crackers and the second generation producers was coordinated to ensure that the supply of petrochemicals met expected demand. The infrastructure developed around the complexes fostered the interdependence of first and second generation producers, as limited facilities were constructed for purposes of transportation and storage of feedstocks for import or export. Following their privatization, this interdependence has increased as second generation producers, which continue to rely upon the crackers for feedstocks and utilities, have increased their ownership of, and participation in the management of, the crackers.
The Brazilian government developed the Brazilian petrochemical industry generally by promoting the formation of three-way joint ventures among the Brazilian government, foreign petrochemical companies and private Brazilian investors. In these joint ventures, Petrobras subsidiary, Petroquisa, participated as the representative of the Brazilian government, with Petrobras as the supplier of naphtha; a foreign petrochemical company provided technology; and a Brazilian private sector company provided management.
In 1992, the Brazilian government began a privatization program to reduce significantly its ownership of the petrochemical industry. This program was designed to increase private investment in the petrochemical industry and to improve its efficiency. As a result of the privatization program, the Brazilian governments ownership of our common shares, and of the common shares of Copesul and Petroquímica União, was significantly reduced, replaced by private sector entities. As a result of a similar privatization process, private ownership of the second generation producers increased.
The following table sets forth the percentage of the indirect ownership interests held in the crackers voting shares by Petroquisa, private sector entities and other investors before the privatization of the crackers and at December 31, 2004.
Role of Petrobras
Prior to 1995, Brazils Constitution granted a monopoly to the Brazilian government, exercised through Petrobras, over the research, exploration, production, refining, importing and transporting of crude oil and refined petroleum products (excluding petrochemical products) in Brazil. The Brazilian Constitution also provided that by-products of the refining process, such as naphtha, could only be supplied in Brazil by or through Petrobras. Naphtha is the principal feedstock used in Brazil for the production of basic petrochemicals such as ethylene and propylene. In 1995, the Brazilian Constitution was amended to allow petroleum and petroleum related activities to be carried out by private companies, by concession or authorization from the Brazilian government. Since 1995, the Brazilian government has taken several measures to liberalize the petrochemical industry in Brazil.
In 1997, Law No. 9,478/97 implemented the 1995 constitutional amendment by creating the Brazilian Energy Policy Council (Conselho Nacional de Política Energética) and the National Petroleum Agency (Agência
Nacional de Petróleo), which were charged with regulating and monitoring of the oil industry and the Brazilian energy sector. Following the creation of the National Petroleum Agency, new rules and regulations have been implemented, aimed at gradually ending Petrobras monopoly. Since 1997, our company and Copesul have imported naphtha from trading companies and oil and gas producers located abroad.
During 2004, Petrobras produced and sold approximately 56% of the naphtha consumed by our company and Copesul, and the remaining naphtha consumed by our company and Copesul was imported.
We set prices for ethylene, the principal first generation petrochemical product that we sell to second generation producers, using a margin sharing system. See Item 4. Information on Our CompanyBasic Petrochemicals UnitSales and Marketing of Our Basic Petrochemicals Unit. Prices paid by second generation producers for imported first generation petrochemical products partly reflect transportation and tariff costs. We establish the prices of ethylene by-products, such as butadiene, by reference to several market factors, including the prices paid by second generation producers for imported products, which also take into account transportation and tariff costs.
Second generation producers, including our company, generally set prices for their petrochemical products by reference to several market factors, including the prices paid by third generation producers for imported products. Prices paid for such imports also reflect transportation and tariff costs.
The Brazilian government has frequently used import tariffs to implement economic policies. As a result, import tariffs generally vary significantly, especially those imposed on petrochemical products. In November 1997, for example, the import tariffs for polyethylene, polypropylene and PVC were increased from 14.0% to 17.0% but were subsequently reduced to 16.5% in 2001 and then to 15.5% on January 1, 2002. On January 1, 2002, the import tariff for caustic soda was reduced from 10.5% to 9.5%. At December 31, 2003, the import tariffs for basic petrochemical products ranged between 3.5% and 5.5% (except for caustic soda) and the import tariffs for second generation petrochemical products ranged between 13.5% and 15.5%. Imports and exports within the free trade area composed of Argentina, Brazil, Paraguay and Uruguay in South America, or Mercosul (Mercado Comum do Sul), have not been subject to tariffs since December 2001. On December 31, 2004, the Brazilian government reduced all import tariffs for basic and second generation petrochemical products by 1.5%.
The following table shows the fluctuation of the tariffs on certain basic petrochemicals and second generation petrochemicals from 1995 through 2004. The tariff rates shown are those applicable at the end of the respective years, except where indicated.
The Brazilian markets in which we compete are cyclical and are sensitive to relative changes in supply and demand. Demand for petrochemical products is significantly affected by general economic conditions in Brazil and other countries in Mercosul, particularly Argentina. The Brazilian markets are also impacted by the cyclical nature of international markets as prices for petrochemical products in Brazil are determined in part with reference to international market prices for these products and by the prices, including tariff and transportation costs, paid by importers of petrochemical products into Brazil. Reductions in tariffs and other trade barriers have increasingly exposed the Brazilian petrochemical industry to price competition in the international markets.
Traditionally, the second and third calendar quarters have been the periods of the year with the highest sales for the petrochemical industry in the Brazilian market. The increase during this six-month period is tied in part to the production of consumer goods for sale during the year-end holiday season.
Brazilian GDP increased by 5.2% in 2004, the highest growth rate in Brazil since 1994. The growth of Brazilian GDP in 2004 contributed to an estimated 11.6% increase in domestic consumption of thermoplastic resins (polyethylene, polypropylene and PVC), reflecting the high elasticity of demand for these products. The increase in Brazilian domestic consumption of thermoplastic resins was particularly influenced by growth in certain industrial sectors of the Brazilian economy, such as automotive, civil construction, home appliances, shoes, packaging and disposable goods. As a result of this increase in domestic demand for thermoplastic resins, coupled with the increase in the production capacity of Brazilian producers, including our company, increased rates of capacity utilization and the continuing appreciation of the real against the U.S. dollar in 2004, Brazilian producers significantly increased their domestic sales of these products in 2004. In addition, although imports represented a small percentage of total Brazilian domestic consumption, imports of polyolefins, PVC and PET increased by 9.3%, 9.4% and 0.7%, respectively, in 2004.
We anticipate that demand for our products in Brazil may grow due to increasing consumption of plastic-based products, as well as population growth and expected general economic growth in Brazil. In addition, Brazilian per capita consumption of second generation petrochemicals has been modest compared to per capita consumption in many other more developed countries, which we believe suggests a potential for future growth in demand in Brazil. However, that growth could be hindered by the factors described in Risk FactorsRisks Relating to Brazil and Risks Relating to Our Company and the Petrochemical Industry.
The following table sets forth information relating to our production, the estimated production of other Brazilian companies and exports and imports of the products included therein for the years indicated.
Sources: Brazilian Association of Chemical Industry and Derivative Products and Braskem.
The above estimates of total domestic consumption assume that all domestic production is immediately sold in the market and that there has been no change in total domestic inventory.
Overview of Our Companys Operations
We are the leading petrochemical company in Latin America, based on average annual production capacity. We are also one of the three largest Brazilian-owned private sector industrial companies, based on net sales revenue. We recorded net income of R$690.9 million in 2004 on net sales revenue of R$12,192.0 million, in each case under Brazilian GAAP. We produce a diversified portfolio of petrochemical products and have a strategic focus on polyethylene, polypropylene and PVC. We have integrated first and second generation petrochemical production facilities, with 13 plants in Brazil.
We have grown over the past four years primarily as the result of the integration of the operations of six Brazilian petrochemical companies: our company; OPP Química; Polialden; Trikem; Proppet; and Nitrocarbono. We have merged with these companies, other than Polialden. Our business operations are organized into four business units, which correspond to our principal production processes and products:
We believe the integration of the operations of the companies that formed our company has produced, and will continue to provide, significant synergies and cost savings from reductions in tax, procurement and logistics expenses, general and administrative expenses and other operating expenses.
Our vision is to strengthen our position as a world-class petrochemical company. We seek to reinforce our leading position in the Latin American petrochemical market, with a focus on polyethylene, polypropylene and PVC and integration with our production of ethylene and propylene. Our business model focuses on enhancing shareholder value, with strategic drivers consisting of market leadership, cost competitiveness and technological autonomy.
We are the first Brazilian company to integrate first and second generation petrochemical production facilities. Our competitive advantages are derived from our leadership position in the Latin American market and on our favorable cost structure, resulting from our production scale and synergies realized from integration of the companies that formed our company.
We are committed to providing technological support to our customers through the Braskem Technology and Innovation Center, which develops processes, products and applications for the sector.
The formation of our company marked a milestone in the restructuring of an industrial sector that is vital to Brazils economic development. We supply petrochemical products with application in a wide variety of industries, such as food packaging, automotive parts, paints, construction, agriculture, fabrics and personal care products.
The key elements of our strategy include:
Our Polyolefins Unit and our Vinyls Unit maintain technology and innovation centers that seek to:
On June 22, 2005, our board of directors and the board of directors of Petroquisa approved the creation of a joint venture between our companies for the construction and operation of a polypropylene plant to be located in Paulínia, in the State of São Paulo, with an annual production capacity of approximately 300,000 tons. We are also evaluating the feasibility of entering into a joint venture with other companies for the construction of a new integrated polyethylene production center in Brazil close to the Brazilian-Bolivian border that would use Bolivian natural gas as a feedstock and have an annual production capacity of 600,000 tons of polyethylene. In addition, we have entered into a memorandum of understanding with Petroquímica de Venezuela, S.A., the petrochemical subsidiary of Petróleos de Venezuela, S.A., to evaluate joint business opportunities in Venezuela, including the construction of a polypropylene plant in the El Tablazo petrochemical complex in Venezuela, with an annual production capacity of approximately 400,000 tons. We believe that additional capacity developed by our company, together with joint venture partners, will enable us to maintain and expand our leadership position in Latin America and support our expansion into strategic export markets.
Our cost reduction program is linked to initiatives to purchase feedstocks at competitive prices. We began to import lower-cost naphtha in 2000, and during 2004, we imported 37.7% of our feedstock requirements, primarily from North Africa, compared to 31.2% in 2003. We also intend to continue to substitute lower-cost petroleum condensate for a portion of our naphtha needs.
Braskem + Program
We are in the process of implementing an operational excellence program named Braskem +. This program is designed to build upon the experience that Braskem has accumulated through the process of capturing operational synergies during its integration process. The Braskem + program seeks to:
In connection with the development of the Braskem + program, we engaged a leading consulting firm to analyze our industrial practices and compare them to benchmarking practices in the global petrochemical sector. Through this analysis, we have identified 218 initiatives designed to further improve, among other things, our capacity utilization, maintenance scheduling and completion, and feedstock procurement and usage.
The implementation of the Braskem + program is being performed by several teams, including:
We are developing an electronic database to record the ongoing results of our implementation of the Braskem + program, including information regarding our success in meeting scheduled milestones. We intend to update this database regularly and monitor our progress in meeting the objectives of this program.
Basic Petrochemicals Unit
At December 31, 2004, our Basic Petrochemicals facilities had one of the largest average annual production capacities of all first generation producers in Latin America. Our Basic Petrochemicals Unit accounted for R$6,480.0 million, or 52.1%, of the net sales revenue of all segments in 2004, including net sales to our other business units. Our Basic Petrochemicals Unit produces:
We also supply utilities to other plants located in the Northeastern Complex and render services to the operators of those plants. In 2004, 88.5% of our Basic Petrochemicals Units sales (including intra-company sales) were derived from the sale of basic petrochemicals, 6.4% from the sale of utilities and 5.0% from the sale of fuels.
The products of our Basic Petrochemicals Unit are used primarily in the manufacture of intermediate petrochemical products, including those manufactured by our other business units. We believe that our Basic Petrochemicals Unit is well positioned to take advantage of increasing demand for basic petrochemicals products in Brazil, both by our other business units and by third parties. We anticipate that long-term growth for these products in Brazil will continue due to increasing consumption of plastic-based consumer products, the trend towards substitution of plastics for more traditional packaging materials, such as glass and paper, as well as general economic growth in Brazil.
Products of Our Basic Petrochemicals Unit
The following chart shows the major products produced by our Basic Petrochemicals Unit, their derivative intermediate products and their most common end uses.
The following table sets forth a breakdown of the sales volume and net sales revenue of our Basic Petrochemicals Unit (including our intra-company sales) by product line and by market for the years indicated.
Olefins are relatively unstable hydrocarbons characterized by a structure that is chemically active and permits other chemically reactive elements, such as oxygen, to be added. Ethylene and propylene, which are types of olefins, are the chemical backbone for many consumer plastic products. Our primary olefins products include polymer grade ethylene and propylene, also known as monomers. Different combinations of monomers are polymerized, or linked together, to form polymers or plastic resins with different properties and characteristics.
Aromatics are hydrocarbons identified by one or more benzene rings or by chemical behavior similar to benzene. Aromatics readily react to add other active molecular groups, such as nitrates and sulfonates.
Our company has been authorized by the National Petroleum Agency to produce and sell automotive gasoline since August 15, 2000 and LPG since October 2, 2001, both domestically and for export. We have been producing and selling both automotive gasoline and LPG since these dates.
We also produce electric power, steam, compressed air and drinking and demineralized water, some of which are by-products of our production of basic petrochemicals. We use these utilities in our own production processes, including those of our Polyolefins Unit and our Vinyls Unit, and sell these utilities to approximately 40 companies, including companies located outside of the Northeastern Complex. Our utilities facilities include units for thermoelectric power generation, water treatment and the production of steam and compressed air.
We self-generate approximately 70% of the Northeastern Complexs energy consumption requirements, and CHESF, a Brazilian government-owned electric power generation company located in the State of Bahia, furnishes the remainder.
Production Facilities of Our Basic Petrochemicals Unit
We believe that the technological processes we use at our basic petrochemicals plants are among the most advanced in the world. We currently own and operate five major Basic Petrochemicals units (Olefins 1, Olefins 2, Aromatics 1, Aromatics 2 and Energy and Services), each of which is located at the Northeastern Complex. Our Basic Petrochemicals Unit defines the term unit to mean several plants that are linked together to produce olefins, aromatics or utilities. As a result, the production capacity of Aromatics units 1 and 2 is the sum of the production capacities of the various plants that form these units. At December 31, 2004, our basic petrochemicals plants had total annual production capacity of 1,280,000 tons of ethylene and 550,000 tons of propylene.
The table below sets forth the name, primary products, annual production capacity at December 31, 2004 and annual production for the years presented for each of our principal Basic Petrochemicals units and plants.
Raw Materials of our Basic Petrochemicals Unit
Naphtha, a crude oil derivative, is the principal raw material that we use to produce our basic petrochemical products and represents the principal production and operating cost of our Basic Petrochemicals Unit. The price of naphtha that we purchase varies primarily based on changes in the U.S. dollar-based, international price of crude oil.
Both of our olefins plants are capable of using naphtha as a feedstock, and our Olefins 1 unit also uses petroleum condensate. Until the early 1980s, gas oil represented approximately 60% of the feedstock used by first generation producers in Brazil and naphtha represented the remainder, but the increased use of diesel fuel by trucks and buses in Brazil in the 1980s reduced the supply of gas oil available to petrochemical producers. Currently, we use naphtha as our primary feedstock, and in 2004, naphtha accounted for (1) 82.4% of the total cost of sales of our Basic Petrochemicals Unit and (2) 67.7% of our overall direct and indirect cost of sales. However, due to the high price of naphtha, we have also used petroleum condensate as an alternative and more competitively priced feedstock. We have recently reduced our use of petroleum condensate while we evaluate the efficiency of the use of this feedstock in our plants.
The following table shows the average Amsterdam-Rotterdam-Antwerp market price of naphtha for the periods indicated.
Source: Bloomberg L.P.
Our Basic Petrochemicals Unit is located:
We use the Madre de Deus Port Terminal to unload naphtha imported by Petrobras or that is shipped from other Petrobras refineries located outside the State of Bahia. A pipeline owned and operated by Petrobras transports naphtha from the Madre de Deus Terminal to Refinaria Landulfo Alves where it interconnects with the refinerys naphtha pipeline system. Refinaria Landulfo Alves naphtha pipeline system interconnects with the pipeline system of the port terminal of Aratú, through which naphtha and petroleum condensate are transported to our basic petrochemicals plants.
At the port terminal of Aratú, we use (1) the Terminal Químico de Aratú (which is owned by Terminal Químico de Aratú S.A.TEQUIMAR, a subsidiary of Ultrapar Participações S.A, a Brazilian LPG distribution company) to distribute our products in liquid form, (2) the Terminal de Gases (which is owned by TegalTerminal de Gases Ltda., one of our subsidiaries) to distribute our products in gaseous form, and (3) the Raw Materials Terminal (which is owned by our company) to import naphtha and condensate.
Following the end of Petrobras monopoly over the supply of naphtha, we invested approximately US$37 million in our transportation infrastructure to enable our port facilities at Aratú to receive shipments of imported naphtha.
Supply Contracts and Pricing
Our Basic Petrochemicals Unit purchased:
On June 22, 1978, we and Petrobras entered into a Naphtha and Gas Oil Purchase and Sale Contract (which was amended in February 1993 and in February 2003). This contract has a term of 10 years, expiring in 2008, and is automatically renewable for further 10-year periods, unless either party notifies the other party in writing at least one year prior to the expiration of the contract that it does not intend to renew the contract. Under this contract:
Petrobras has provided us with a R$570.0 million credit line to purchase naphtha and gas oil that it produces. This credit line is secured by first mortgages on two parcels of our property used by our Polyolefins Unit in the Southern Complex.
On August 9, 2000, regulations issued by the National Petroleum Agency ended Petrobras monopoly over the supply of naphtha in Brazil. These regulations also established a policy of free negotiation of naphtha prices. After a series of negotiations, the Brazilian basic petrochemicals producers and Petrobras entered into a pricing agreement for naphtha sales. According to this agreement, the price of naphtha supplied by Petrobras is linked to the Amsterdam-Rotterdam-Antwerp market price for naphtha and to the real/U.S. dollar exchange rate.
La Société Nationale pour la Recherche, la Production, le Transport, la Transformation et la Commercialisation des HydrocarburesSONATRACH (the Algerian national petroleum company), or SONATRACH, is our most important supplier of imported naphtha. We and SONATRACH entered into a Contract for the Sale and Purchase of Naphtha, which became effective on January 1, 2002. This contract has a one-year term and is renewable based on the mutual agreement of the parties for further one-year periods. We have renewed this contract three times, and the current contract expires on December 31, 2005. Under this contract:
If this contract were not renewed or were otherwise terminated, we believe that we could purchase sufficient quantities of naphtha from other suppliers, including Petrobras, to meet our naphtha supply needs.
On July 26, 2004, our company entered into an import note assignment agreement with certain financial institutions. Under this agreement, we issue short-term non-interest bearing promissory notes, or import notes, to designated trading companies outside Brazil (including our subsidiary Braskem Incorporated Limited, formerly known as CPN Incorporated Ltd.) to evidence our obligation to pay for purchases of naphtha and petroleum condensate from these trading companies. These designated trading companies had the right through October 31, 2004 to assign up to an aggregate principal amount of US$100.0 million of these import notes to the financial institutions. These assignments were made at a discount based on a rate of LIBOR plus 2.75% per annum, and these companies could use the proceeds of these assignments to purchase imported naphtha or petroleum condensate or refinance existing obligations in respect of imported naphtha or petroleum condensate incurred within 90 days prior to the date of the assignment. The designated trading companies were required to pay participation and commitment fees to the financial institutions, which fees were deducted from the discounted purchase price of the import notes.
Technology of our Basic Petrochemicals Unit
We use engineering process technology from a variety of sources that we implemented in constructing or upgrading the manufacturing facilities of our Basic Petrochemicals Unit, including the following technology:
These non-exclusive contracts generally provided for payment to those companies at stages specified in the contracts, but we do not pay ongoing royalties under these contracts.
We also use technology under non-exclusive arrangements from a variety of sources for specific production processes, including the following:
Our Basic Petrochemicals Unit also uses technology developed by our company. We do not pay any continuing royalties under any of these arrangements, except for the technology licensing agreement with Mobil. We paid an initial royalty under these arrangements (excluding our agreement with Mobil). If any of these arrangements were terminated or no longer available to us, we believe that we would be able to replace this technology with comparable or better technology from other sources.
Sales and Marketing of Our Basic Petrochemicals Unit
We sell our basic petrochemical products principally in Brazil, mainly to second generation petrochemical producers located in the Northeastern Complex, as well as to customers in the United States and Europe. Our Basic Petrochemicals Unit also produces utilities for its own use and for sale to approximately 40 companies, including companies located outside of the Northeastern Complex.
As is common with other first generation petrochemical producers, our Basic Petrochemicals Unit has a high concentration of sales to a limited number of customers. Net sales to our 10 largest customers (excluding intra-company sales) accounted for approximately 69% of our Basic Petrochemicals Units total net sales revenue (excluding intra-company sales) during the year ended December 31, 2004.
As part of our commercial strategy, our Basic Petrochemicals Unit has focused on developing longer-term relationships with our customers. We have entered into long-term supply contracts with several second generation producers located in the Northeastern Complex, including Politeno, Oxiteno do Nordeste S.A., Polibrasil Resinas S.A., or Polibrasil, and Petroflex. These supply contracts generally have an initial 10-year term and are automatically renewable for five-year periods unless one party notifies the other of its intention not to renew. These contracts also provide for minimum and maximum quantities to be purchased and monthly deliveries. We also sell automotive gasoline and LPG to Petrobras and other fuel distribution companies.
We determine the prices for our olefins and aromatics products with reference to several market factors. The price of ethylene that we charge our two largest customers, which represented 89.0% of our ethylene sales to third parties in 2004, is based on a margin sharing system. Under this system, the benefit or burden of higher or lower prices for naphtha and for ethylene derivatives, such as polyethylene, is shared between us and our customers. The margin shared by first and second generation producers is calculated for second generation products based on the market price charged by the second generation producer for its products and its production costs. The market price for ethylene is based on benchmark costs imputed to, and actual costs incurred by, both first and second generation producers for the production of second generation products. The variable-cost portion of these production costs reflects costs effectively incurred, while the fixed-cost portion of these production costs and depreciation expenses is determined based on benchmark costs. The benchmark costs are determined based on costs incurred by leading first and second generation producers located in the United States. This margin is then divided between the relevant first and second generation producers pro rata based on a return on capital invested by each such producer. Accordingly, the price of ethylene for these customers is calculated based on the weighted average price for ethylene obtained in the process of dividing the margin of each of these customers, taking into consideration the amount of ethylene consumed by each customer. The actual margins received by the first and second generation producers vary depending on the degree to which their actual costs compare with the benchmark costs used in the pricing formula to calculate the margin.
Prior to 2005, we used a formula similar to the formula still in use for our two largest ethylene customers for all of our ethylene customers, including our other business units. Currently, we determine the prices that we charge our other ethylene customers, including our other business units, by reference to international market prices. In addition, we are negotiating with our two largest ethylene customers to terminate the margin sharing system of ethylene pricing and to institute a market pricing system.
We calculate the monthly price of propylene by multiplying our monthly ethylene price (including Brazilian taxes) by the ratio of the European contract price for propylene to the European contract price for ethylene. We determine the price of butadiene and para-xylene by using the contract price for these products in the United States, and our prices for butadiene and para-xylene, unlike our prices for our other basic petrochemical products, include freight costs. We set the prices of benzene and ortho-xylene monthly by determining the mean average of European contract prices and U.S. contract prices for those products as set forth in specialized trade publications. We set the prices of solvents and fuels with reference to Brazilian market prices for these products. We set the prices of utilities based on our production costs.
We are focused on maintaining our leading position in the Brazilian market, while continuing to use our export operations to manage the relationship between our production capacity and domestic demand. Accordingly, we believe that our continued presence in export markets is essential to manage overcapacity in the Brazilian market. Our volume of export sales has generally varied based on the level of domestic demand for our products. Export net sales of basic petrochemicals (which exclude utilities and automotive gasoline) represented 13.6% of our Basic Petrochemicals Units net sales revenue from sales of basic petrochemicals in 2004, 11.9% in 2003 and 10.2% in 2002. We exported basic petrochemicals mainly to customers in Europe and the United States.
The following table sets forth our export sales and export volumes of basic petrochemicals for the years indicated:
We set export prices for:
Since August 15, 2000, we have been authorized by the National Petroleum Agency to produce and sell automotive gasoline. Our net sales revenue from automotive gasoline was R$325.4 million in 2004 as compared to R$249.2 million in 2003 and R$156.2 million in 2002. Our net export sales revenue from automotive gasoline was R$167.2 million in 2004 as compared to R$128.1 million in 2003 and R$82.6 million in 2002. Our sales of type A automotive gasoline reached 403,760 cubic meters in 2004 as compared to 360,458 cubic meters in 2003 and 324,567 cubic meters in 2002.
In addition to basic petrochemicals and fuels, we produce electric power, steam, treated water and compressed air for our own use and for sale to other second generation producers in the Northeastern Complex. Our net sales revenue from sales of utilities (including sales to our other business units) was R$417.5 million in 2004, R$384.5 million in 2003 and R$320.2 million in 2002. We also provide storage services to companies located in the Northeastern Complex through our subsidiary TegalTerminal de Gases Ltda., providing storage for gaseous petrochemical products. TegalTerminal de Gases Ltda. operates in the port terminal of Aratú in the State of Bahia.
Although there are currently three major petrochemical complexes in Brazil, our basic petrochemical customers, which are mostly second generation petrochemical producers with plants located in the Northeastern Complex, would have difficulty obtaining their feedstocks from other sources at lower prices due to the high cost of transportation of these products, as well as other logistical difficulties. In addition, because Brazil produces sufficient quantities of olefins to meet domestic demand, imports of these products are generally sporadic and usually related to scheduled plant maintenance shutdowns or to meet unsatisfied domestic demand, as is the case with imports of para-xylene.
At December 31, 2004, our polyolefins production facilities had the largest average annual production capacity of all second generation producers of polyolefins products in Brazil and elsewhere in Latin America. Our Polyolefins Unit accounted for R$3,489.4 million, or 28.0%, of the net sales revenue of all segments in 2004. Our Polyolefins Unit is comprised of the operations conducted by Polialden and our company.
Our Polyolefins Unit produces:
Approximately three-fifths of our Polyolefins Units sales volume in 2004 was derived from the sale of polyethylene products, and most of the remainder was derived from the sale of polypropylene products.
We manufacture a broad range of polyolefins products for use in consumer and industrial applications, including:
In 2004, we had an approximate 27% share of the Brazilian polyethylene market and an approximate 40% share of the Brazilian polypropylene market, based on sales volumes. We anticipate that domestic growth in demand for these products will continue to increase due to:
Products of Our Polyolefins Unit
The following table sets forth a breakdown of the sales volume and net sales revenue of our Polyolefins Unit for 2004, 2003 and 2002 by product and by market.
We provide technical assistance to our customers to meet their specific needs by adapting and modifying our polyethylene and polypropylene products. In particular, we develop customized value-added polypropylene compounds for use by our customers in their specialized applications.
Polyethylene has the simplest chemical structure of all commercial polymers and is a very versatile material. World production volume of polyethylene is the highest among all commercial plastics. Polyethylene is used to manufacture a wide variety of products.
Our customers purchase different polyethylene resins depending on the manufacturing process that they employ and the desired physical characteristics of the end products that they manufacture. LDPE is the most flexible of polyethylene products and is used in a variety of plastic or film applications and in food packaging, trash bags and shopping bags. LLDPE is used in applications that require greater sealing capacity and better mechanical resistance, including plastic films and flexible food packaging. HDPE is used for applications that require higher mechanical resistance.
While each form of polyethylene is used for different applications, there is some overlap in the uses of these resins, and with certain modifications, polyethylene resins may be substituted for each other in certain end product manufacturing processes. For example, demand for LLDPE has grown since it was first introduced in 1989 and has resulted in reduced demand for LDPE, as manufacturers of certain containers and plastic film applications have switched their production processes and technology to use LLDPE in a blend with LDPE. We expect that production of LDPE will be phased out for the packaging segment over the next few years and replaced by LLDPE. As a result, we believe that growth of the LDPE market should be limited.
In January 2002, we acquired the UHMWP business of Basell USA Inc. in the United States and in Brazil, and, as a result, became the worlds second largest producer of UHMWP, a high-performance engineering plastic.
In 2004, we launched Braskem Flexus®, a high-performance LLDPE product used for specialized packaging. Based on our commercial success with this product, our management has decided to alter our product mix to double our annual production of this resin to 60,000 tons by mid-2005.
Polypropylene is a versatile polymer with a high strength-to-weight ratio. This thermoplastic resin may be manufactured with a variety of properties that permit its use in different processes, such as injection, extrusion, blow molding and thermoforming. Through these processes, polypropylene may be used as a primary raw material for many applications, including the manufacture of carpet fibers, non-woven fabrics for diapers, injection molded parts for durable packaging and automobiles, medical instruments, flexible packaging for candy, pasta and cookies, as well as bottles for beverages. The balance between the mechanical properties and the high thermal resistance of polypropylene is a primary reason why this thermoplastic resin has begun to replace engineering materials such as acrylonitrile-butadiene-styrene (known as ABS), polycarbonate and nylon in domestic appliances and machinery. The lack of toxicity and high chemical resistance of polypropylene permits it to be used in applications with strict sanitary specifications, including in the food and pharmaceutical industries.
In 2004, we launched Braskem Symbios®, a high-performance flexible packaging sealant. We introduced advances in the use of polypropylene containers as a substitute for glass containers for spreadable cream cheese and launched a polypropylene fiber used to manufacture tiles and fiber-cement water cisterns. We also developed a new resin and patent-protected equipment for the production of disposable polypropylene cups, which have a significant competitive advantage over the same product made from polystyrene. We have licensed this technology to one of our customers. Finally, we introduced a new polypropylene resin for use as a substitute for glass and paper in packaging non-carbonated beverages.
Production Facilities of Our Polyolefins Unit
We believe that the variety of technological processes at our polyolefins plants provide us with a competitive advantage in meeting the needs of our customers. We currently own and operate seven plants located in the Northeastern Complex and the Southern Complex. During 2004, we expanded the annual production capacity of our polypropylene plants in the Southern Complex by an aggregate of 100,000 tons. Accordingly, at December 31, 2004, our plants had a total annual production capacity of 650,000 tons of polypropylene and 840,000 tons of polyethylene.
The table below sets forth the location, the primary products, annual production capacity at December 31, 2004, and annual production for the years presented of each of our polyolefins plants.
In the first half of 2004, we completed an efficiency enhancement project at one of our polypropylene plants in the Southern Complex, which increased our annual polypropylene production capacity by 100,000 tons.
Raw Materials of Our Polyolefins Unit
Ethylene and Propylene
The most significant direct costs associated with our production of polyethylene and polypropylene are the costs of purchasing ethylene and propylene, which together accounted for approximately 81% of our Polyolefins Units total cost of sales for 2004 compared to 78% for 2003 and 74% for 2002. In 2004, approximately 45% of these raw materials were supplied by our Basic Petrochemicals Unit and 55% were supplied by Copesul. Our Polyolefins Unit is highly dependent on ethylene and propylene supplied by our Basic Petrochemicals Unit and by Copesul because the costs of storing and transporting ethylene and propylene are substantial and there is inadequate infrastructure in Brazil to import large quantities of ethylene and propylene.
At December 31, 2004, Copesul had an annual ethylene production capacity of 1,135,000 tons and an annual propylene production capacity of 581,000 tons. Copesul is our principal supplier of propylene.
Supply Contracts and Pricing
We have entered into a long-term ethylene and propylene supply contract with Copesul that extends through 2007 and is automatically renewable for additional five-year terms. We own 29.5% of the total share capital of Copesul. Under this contract, we are required to purchase an annual minimum of 268,200 tons of ethylene and an annual maximum of 451,000 tons, as well as an annual minimum of 262,200 tons of propylene and an annual maximum of 439,500 tons, in each case subject to daily and monthly limits. In 2004, we purchased 427,000 tons of ethylene and all of our requirements of propylene (approximately 450,000 tons) from Copesul for our polyolefins operations in the Southern Complex.
We negotiate the prices for the feedstocks for our polyolefins products with Copesul, based upon a pricing formula developed by the Brazilian petrochemical industry. The pricing formula provides for full cost margin sharing between the first generation and second petrochemical producers located at the respective petrochemical complexes. The prices Copesul charges for ethylene that it supplies to our Polyolefins Unit are calculated based on a formula similar to the formula that our Basic Petrochemicals Unit uses to determine prices for its two largest
ethylene customers. See Item 4. Information on Our CompanyBasic Petrochemicals UnitSales and Marketing of Our Basic Petrochemicals Unit. Our Polyolefins Unit purchases ethylene from our Basic Petrochemicals Unit at prices determined by reference to international market prices for ethylene.
The following table sets forth the average prices per ton in reais paid by our company in 2004, 2003 and 2002 for ethylene and propylene:
We also use butene and hexene as raw materials in the production of LLDPE. Butene is supplied by Copesul and by our Basic Petrochemicals Unit, and we import hexene from suppliers located in South Africa.
In addition to overhead costs such as labor and maintenance, our other costs associated with the production of polyethylene and polypropylene include our purchase of chemical catalysts, solvents and utilities, such as electric power, water, steam and nitrogen.
Our Unipol® Plant in the Northeastern Complex uses catalysts supplied to us by Univation Technologies under a license that expires in 2007. Our HDPE slurry plant in the Northeastern Complex produces its own catalysts, and we purchase the inputs that we need to produce our own catalysts from various suppliers at market prices. We purchase most of the catalysts that we use in our polypropylene plants from Basell Polyolefins Company N.V, or Basell, and we also import some catalysts from suppliers in the United States and Europe.
Our Basic Petrochemicals Unit supplies our Polyolefins Units facilities in the Northeastern Complex with steam and water, and Copesul supplies these utilities to our Polyolefins Units facilities in the Southern Complex. In addition, we purchase electric power at both complexes from third parties pursuant to long-term power purchase agreements and, in the Northeastern Complex, from our Basic Petrochemicals Unit. Our polyolefins plants in the Northeastern Complex are able to purchase electric power from alternative sources if our Basic Petrochemicals Unit is unable to meet our total demand for electric power. In general, we believe that there are sufficient alternative sources available at reasonable prices for each of these other inputs used in our polyolefins production process such that the loss of any single supplier would not have a material adverse effect on our operations.
Technology of Our Polyolefins Unit
Rights to Use Technology
We have entered into several non-exclusive agreements with a number of leading petrochemical companies to use certain technology and catalysts for our Polyolefins Unit.
If any of these licenses were terminated, we believe that we would be able to replace the relevant technology with comparable technology from other sources.
Research and Development
Our Polyolefins Unit coordinates and maintains a research and development program, which includes (1) the Braskem Center for Technology and Innovation, (2) pilot plants, (3) catalysis, polymerization and polymer sciences laboratories, and (4) process engineering and automation centers.
The Braskem Center for Technology and Innovation at the Southern Complex includes a staff of approximately 150 employees, which seeks to:
We have developed most of our new polyolefins products and applications at the Braskem Center for Technology and Innovation, including Braskem Flexus® and Braskem Symbios® in 2004. Prior to the development of these products at the Braskem Center for Technology and Innovation, these products were only available in Brazil through imports.
Our Polyolefins Unit maintains seven pilot plants located in the Southern Complex and the Northeastern Complex that use Spheripol®, Spherilene® and Unipol® technology. Two of our Polyolefins Unit pilot plants operate at approximately 1/150 of the scale of our full-scale plants, and our other pilot plants operate at approximately 1/400 of the scale of our full-scale plants. Our Polyolefins Unit uses these pilot plants to (1) produce small quantities of new products to test them in our laboratories and with our customers, (2) develop new conditions and formulations for the creation of new products, and (3) increase the efficiency of our production processes. We believe that these pilot plants give us a competitive advantage over our competitors in Latin America, which do not have similar resources.
Our Polyolefins Unit maintains catalysis, polymerization and polymer sciences laboratories in the Southern Complex and the Northeastern Complex. These laboratories enable us to identify new and to improve existing licensed catalysts. We have developed or improved upon a majority of the polyethylene and polypropylene grades that we sell based on technology that we have created or improved.
Our Polyolefins Unit maintains process engineering and automation centers in the Southern Complex and the Northeastern Complex. These centers assist us in developing advanced process control technology, reducing our variable costs, achieving operational stability and increasing our production of polyolefins.
Our Polyolefins Unit is in regular contact with international process technology licensors to acquire new technologies and improvements. We test new processes on a regular basis, and we follow advances and trends in the petrochemical industry through our relationships with Brazilian and international research universities and consortia. In addition, we maintain ongoing contracts with licensors that permit us to upgrade our technology in order to receive and install improvements developed for our existing processes.
Sales and Marketing of Our Polyolefins Unit
We sell our polyethylene and polypropylene products to approximately 1,100 customers, and sales by our Polyolefins Unit accounted for 28.0% of our net sales revenue of all segments in 2004. We have a diversified product mix that allows us to serve a broad range of end users in several industries. Our customers generally are third generation petrochemical producers that manufacture a wide variety of plastic-based consumer and industrial goods.
Net sales revenue to our 10 largest customers accounted for 28.8% of our Polyolefins Units total net sales revenue during the year ended December 31, 2004. No customer accounted for more than 6.0% of our total net sales revenue during 2004, 2003 or 2002.
We are focused on developing longer-term relationships with our customers. Given the cyclical nature of the markets for our petrochemical products, we believe that we can strengthen customer loyalty during periods of reduced demand for polyethylene or polypropylene by providing a reliable source of supply to these customers during periods of high demand. We work closely with our customers to determine their needs, to provide technical assistance and to coordinate the production and delivery of our products. Customers submit annual proposals giving their estimated monthly requirements for the upcoming year for each of our polyolefins products, including technical specifications, delivery terms and proposed payment conditions. We evaluate these proposals on a monthly basis to make any required adjustments and to monitor and attempt to ensure adequate supply for each customer.
In addition to direct sales to our customers, our Polyolefins Unit sells our products in Brazil through exclusive independent distributors. These distributors sell our polyethylene and polypropylene products to manufacturers with lower production requirements and are able to aggregate multiple orders for production and delivery to customers that would otherwise be uneconomical for us to service. Furthermore, by serving smaller customers through a network of distributors, account managers in our Polyolefins Unit focus their efforts on delivering high quality service to a smaller number of large, direct customers. We have selected our distributors based on their ability to provide full service to their customers, including the ability to prepare our products on a customized basis.
In 2004, our Polyolefins Unit conducted an analysis of its policy with respect to distributors and of its network of distributors. As a result, one of our distribution agreements was terminated and we are in the process of renegotiating our distribution agreements with the remaining eight distributors (three of whom form part of a related group of companies) with the goal of establishing uniform terms. We expect to have new distribution agreements in place by the end of the first half of 2005.
Our volume of export sales has generally varied based upon the level of domestic demand for our products. Export sales represented 19.4% of our Polyolefins Units net sales revenue in 2004, 36.4% in 2003 and 29.5% in 2002. Our principal export market for polyolefins is other countries in South America, particularly the Mercosul countries, and we intend to increase our export sales in the Mercosul countries as well as in Chile. We have established a strategic position in the Southern Cone countries through regular sales to local distributors and agents who understand their respective markets. Our strategy to increase our presence in the Southern Cone is intended, among other things, to reduce our exposure to the cyclicality of the international spot market for polyolefins through the development of long-term relationships with customers in neighboring countries.
The following table sets forth export sales and export volumes of our Polyolefins Unit for the years indicated.
The main focus of our Polyolefins Unit is to maintain our leading position in the Brazilian market while continuing to export in order to manage the relationship between our production capacity and domestic demand for our products. Currently, we target an annual average production that is approximately 20% in excess of anticipated Brazilian market demand in order to meet variations in local demand and to respond to production fluctuations, seasonality and export product sales. As a result, we believe that our continued presence in export markets is essential to help manage any overcapacity in the Brazilian market and to maintain our position as leader in the supply of polyolefins in South America.
Prices and Sales Terms
We determine the prices for our polyethylene and polypropylene products with reference to international market prices. Our customers in Brazil may pay in full on delivery or elect credit terms that require payment in full within 14 to 63 days following delivery. We charge interest based on prevailing market rates to our Brazilian customers that elect to pay on credit.
We generally conduct our export sales to buyers in countries outside the Southern Cone through the international spot market. Our customer base in these markets consists primarily of trading houses and distributors, most of which have operations in Europe, the United States or in Asia, principally Hong Kong. Pricing is based on international spot market prices. We make all sales in these markets with letters of credit. Export prices for polyolefins sales in the Southern Cone countries are based on regional prices and sales are generally made either with letters of credit or through direct bank collections.
We compete with regional polyolefins producers located in Brazil and Argentina and, to a lesser extent, with other importers of these products. In the Brazilian polyethylene market, we compete with a number of companies that produce one or two of the products in our production line. LDPE is produced in Brazil by Polietilenos União with an annual production capacity in 2004 of 130,000 tons, Dow Brasil S.A. with 144,000 tons, Petroquímica Triunfo S.A. with 160,000 tons and Politeno with 150,000 tons, compared to our annual production capacity of 210,000 tons. Politeno, in which we own 34.0% of the total share capital (including 35.0% of the voting share capital), produces the same range of polyolefins products that we produce.
In the HDPE and LLDPE markets, we compete with the following producers in Brazil: Politeno, with an annual production capacity of 210,000 tons at a plant with a swing line capable of producing LLDPE and HDPE; Ipiranga Petroquímica S.A., with an annual production capacity of 150,000 tons at a plant with a swing line capable of producing LLDPE and HDPE and an additional 400,000 tons of HDPE at another plant; and Solvay, with an annual capacity of 150,000 tons of HDPE. We have (1) a combined annual production capacity of 500,000 tons at two swing line plants capable of producing LLDPE and HDPE located in the Southern Complex and the Northeastern Complex, respectively, and (2) an additional 130,000 tons of annual production capacity of HDPE at another plant in the Northeastern Complex. We are currently expanding the production capacity of our HDPE plants in the Northeastern Complex by an aggregate amount of 60,000 tons annually through efficiency enhancements. See Capital Expenditures. Rio Polímeros, a Brazilian petrochemical company, has constructed a petrochemical plant in Duque de Caxias, Rio de Janeiro, with an annual production capacity of 540,000 tons of LLDPE and HDPE, which commenced operations on June 23, 2005.
In the Brazilian polypropylene market, we compete with Ipiranga and Polibrasil, which is controlled by Basell Polyolefins Company N.V. and Suzano. In 2004, Ipiranga had annual production capacity of 150,000 tons and Polibrasil had 625,000 tons, compared to our annual production capacity of 650,000 tons.
We do not have any domestic competitors in the Brazilian UHMWP market. Internationally, our primary competitor in this market is Celanese AG, a German chemical company that has approximately 52% of the worldwide production capacity of UHMWP.
Traditionally, we have not faced substantial competition from imports of polyethylene and polypropylene due to tariff rates, transportation costs for imported products and other factors relating primarily to the logistics involved in importing these products. In 2004, imports of polyethylene into Brazil represented 17.0% (15.8% in 2003) of Brazils total consumption of polyethylene, and imports of polypropylene into Brazil represented 6.2% (8.9% in 2003) of Brazils total consumption of polypropylene. We expect competition from international producers to increase substantially in selected foreign markets in which we intend to attempt to increase our sales of polyolefins products.
We are the leading producer of PVC in Brazil, based on sales volumes in 2004. At December 31, 2004, our PVC production facilities had the largest average annual production capacity in Latin America. Our Vinyls Unit accounted for R$1,858.8 million, or 14.9%, of our net sales revenue of all segments in 2004.
Our Vinyls Unit is the only vertically integrated producer of PVC in Brazil. Our PVC production is integrated through our production of chlorine and other raw materials. Our Vinyls Unit also manufactures caustic soda, which is used by producers of aluminum and paper; EDC; and chlorine, which is used internally to manufacture EDC. In 2004, 68.8% of our Vinyls Units net sales revenue was derived from the sale of PVC products, 18.4% was derived from the sale of caustic soda and 9.5% from the sale of EDC and the remainder from the sale of other products.
In 2004, we had an approximate 57% share of the Brazilian PVC market, based on sales volumes.
Products of Our Vinyls Unit
The following table sets forth a breakdown of the sales volume and net sales revenue of our Vinyls Unit for 2004, 2003 and 2002, by product and by market:
PVC is a versatile polymer, and global production volume of PVC is the second highest among all commercial plastics. We produce suspension and dispersion PVC in various grades, which are sold in various sized bags or in bulk to third generation producers and transported by truck, rail or, in some cases, ship.
Approximately 94% of our PVC production is in the form of suspension PVC. The grades of PVC produced by the suspension production process are the most widely used, including for use in the manufacture of pipes and fittings, laminated products, shoes, sheeting, flooring, cable insulation, electrical conduit, packaging and medical applications. The grades of dispersion PVC are more specialized products and are used in the manufacture of toys, synthetic leather, flooring materials, bottle caps and seals, automobile corrosion prevention treatments and wallpaper coatings.
Our Vinyls Unit also produces EDC, the principal feedstock used in the production of PVC. We used approximately 67.3% of our EDC production in 2004 for further processing into PVC and exported the remainder to Asia.
In 2004, we launched Plastwood, a product made of PVC and wood for finishing ceilings and special patio decks, in partnership with one of our customers in Brazil. We also developed new PVC applications for the Brazilian construction sector, such as prefabricated house and window frame solutions.
Caustic Soda and Chlorine
Our Vinyls Unit also produces caustic soda and chlorine. Caustic soda is a basic commodity chemical that is sold to producers of aluminum, pulp and paper, petrochemicals and other chemicals, soaps and detergents and to waste treatment plants. Caustic soda is also used in the textile industry to make fabrics more absorbent and to improve the strength of dyes, as well as in food processing and electroplating. We sell to third parties almost all of the caustic soda that our Vinyls Unit produces and consume only approximately 6% of our caustic soda production.
Chlorine is a basic chemical commodity that is used in a large variety of industries, including applications in water treatment and chemical and pharmaceutical production. We consume approximately 85% of our chlorine production in our production of EDC and sell most of our remaining chlorine to a company located in the Northeastern Complex that is connected to one of our plants via a specialized pipeline.
Production Facilities of Our Vinyls Unit
We own five vinyls production facilities. Two of our facilities are located in the Northeastern Complex, and two others are located in the State of Alagoas. Our fifth facility is located in the City of São Paulo.
The following table sets forth the name and location, primary products, annual production capacity at December 31, 2004, and annual production for the years presented for each of our vinyls plants.
Raw Materials of Our Vinyls Unit
The most significant direct cost associated with the production of PVC and EDC is the cost of ethylene, which accounted for 67.9% of our variable cost of PVC sales in 2004, as compared to 61.3% in 2003 and 59.5% in 2002, and 81.5% of our EDC sales in 2004, as compared to 75.4% in 2003 and 77.1% in 2002. Our Basic Petrochemical Unit supplies all of the ethylene required by our Vinyls Unit. Ethylene is delivered to our Alagoas plant via a 477 kilometer pipeline that we own, and to our PVC plant in the Northeastern Complex via a separate pipeline. Because the cost of storing and transporting ethylene is substantial and there is inadequate infrastructure in Brazil to permit the importation of large quantities of ethylene, our Vinyls Unit is highly dependent on ethylene that is supplied by our Basic Petrochemicals Unit. For a description of the pricing of ethylene purchased by our Vinyls Unit from our Basic Petrochemicals Unit, see Basic Petrochemicals UnitSales and Marketing of Our Basic Petrochemicals Unit. Our São Paulo plant receives vinylchloride monomer (a raw material used in manufacturing PVC) by ship from our plant in the Northeastern Complex.
Electric power is a significant cost component in our production of chlorine and caustic soda. In 2004, electric power accounted for 70.9% of our Vinyls Units cost of caustic soda sales, as compared to 69.0% in 2003 and 45.0% in 2002, and 18.6% of our Vinyls Units cost of sales, as compared to 22.4% in 2003 and 18.8% in 2002.
Our Vinyls Unit obtains its electric power requirements from various generators under power purchase agreements. Our caustic soda plants and PVC plants at Camaçari and Alagoas purchase electric power from CPFL Comercializacão Brasil S.A. and CHESF. The CHESF contracts are long-term requirements contracts that expire in 2010. Our São Paulo PVC plant obtains its electric power from Eletropaulo Metropolitana-Eletricidade de São Paulo S.A., or Eletropaulo. The power purchase agreement with Eletropaulo is a renewable contract with
automatic rolling one-year extensions. The price terms of these contracts are based upon tariffs regulated by the Brazilian National Electrical Energy Agency (Agência Nacional de Energia Elétrica).
We used approximately 747,000 tons of salt during 2004 in our production of chlorine and caustic soda. Salt accounted for 4.4% of our variable costs of caustic soda sales in 2004, compared to 3.4% in 2003 and 2002, and 1.0% of our Vinyls Units total cost of sales, compared to 1.1% in 2003 and 2002. We have exclusive salt exploration rights at a salt mine located near our Alagoas plant. We estimate that the salt reserves of this mine are sufficient to allow us to produce chlorine at expected rates of production for approximately 40 to 50 years. We enjoy significant cost advantages when compared to certain of our competitors due to low extraction costs of rock salt (particularly compared to sea salt), low transportation costs due to the proximity of the salt mine to our production facility and the higher purity of rock salt as compared to sea salt.
All of our Vinyls Units facilities in the Northeastern Complex are supplied with other required basic utilities, including steam, purified and demineralized water, compressed air and nitrogen, by our Basic Petrochemicals Unit. Most basic utilities are supplied to our Alagoas PVC plant by Companhia Alagoas Industrial, which is owned by the companies operating in the Alagoas complex, including our company. Our chlorine and caustic soda plants in Alagoas and our PVC plant in São Paulo supply their own utilities requirements.
Technology of Our Vinyls Unit
We have entered into several non-exclusive agreements with a number of leading petrochemical companies to use technology for our Vinyls Unit. We have been granted the right to use vinylchloride monomer manufacturing technology from Oxyvinyls Company and PVC technology from Mitsubishi Chemical Corporation. We also have chlorine manufacturing technology agreements with Denora (used in Bahia), Eltech (used in Alagoas) and EVC (used to produce ethylene dichloride in Alagoas). In addition, we own 25 patents and six trademarks in Brazil related to our PVC business.
We do not pay any continuing royalties under any of these license agreements, but we paid an initial fee under these agreements. If any of these arrangements were terminated or no longer available to us, we believe that we would be able to replace the relevant technology with comparable or better technology from other sources.
Our plant in the Northeastern Complex uses mercury cell technology to produce chlorine, which technology can no longer be used in new petrochemical production facilities under Brazilian legislation due in part to environmental concerns regarding mercury emissions resulting from this manufacturing process. The Brazilian government may require us to shift to newer diaphragm technology, which we use in our Alagoas plant, or membrane technology. We have not shifted to these newer technologies yet, in part because the return from the capital expenditures associated with this shift would not be as high as those from other potential investments that we may undertake.
Pilot Plant and Research Center
Our Vinyls Unit maintains a pilot plant for PVC research and development in the State of Bahia and a research center in the State of São Paulo. This center currently employs six application engineers, four chemical engineers and seven technicians specialized in plastics. At this center and in our pilot plant, we produce new
PVC resins, develop and improve PVC production technology, render support services to our customers, train our customers personnel and develop new applications for PVC in Brazil, including vertical blinds, coatings for industrial PVC pipes and resins used in automotive parts and in the manufacture of doors, windows and other building components. In 2004, our research and development center developed Plastwood and new PVC applications for the Brazilian construction sector.
Sales and Marketing of Our Vinyls Unit
Net sales to our 10 largest Vinyls Unit customers accounted for approximately 50.4% of our Vinyls Units total net sales revenue during 2004. One customer accounted for approximately 14.6% of our Vinyls Units total sales revenue during 2004. No customer accounted for more than 12% of the total net sales revenue of our Vinyls Unit during 2003 or 2002. One customer accounted for 69.2% of our total external EDC sales in 2004, compared to 73.0% in 2003 and 89.6% in 2002, and our largest caustic soda customer accounted for 11.6% of total caustic soda sales in 2004, compared to 13.4% in 2003 and 5.2% in 2002.
There is a structural link between the PVC and caustic soda markets that exists because caustic soda is a by-product of the production of chlorine required to produce PVC. When demand for PVC is high, then greater amounts of caustic soda are produced, leading to an increase in supply and generally lower prices for caustic soda. Conversely, when demand for PVC is low, prices for caustic soda tend to rise.
In 2004, our Vinyls Unit had domestic net sales revenue of R$1,602.6 million, which accounted for 86.2% of our Vinyls Unit net sales revenue. In 2004, 74.8% of domestic net sales revenue was attributable to sales of PVC, 21.3% was attributable to sales of caustic soda and 3.8% was attributable to sales of other products.
We make most of our domestic sales of PVC and caustic soda directly to customers without the use of third party distributors. However, our Vinyls Unit maintains contractual relationships with three distribution centers located in Paulínia and Itapevi, both in the State of São Paulo, and Joinville in the State of Santa Catarina that provide logistical support. In addition, we operate three warehouse facilities for PVC and six terminal tank facilities for caustic soda strategically located along the Brazilian coast to enable us to deliver our products to our customers on a just-in-time basis. Our Vinyls Unit develops its business through close collaboration with its customers, working together to improve existing products as well as to develop new applications for PVC. Our marketing and technical assistance groups also advise customers and potential customers that are considering the installation of manufacturing equipment for PVC end products.
In 2004, our Vinyls Unit had export net sales revenue of R$256.2 million, which accounted for 13.8% of our Vinyls Units total net sales revenue. Our export sales of PVC and EDC vary from year to year, influenced principally by domestic market demand and product availability.
The following table sets forth export sales and export volumes of our Vinyls Unit for the years indicated.
We have an ongoing obligation to export PVC and EDC under a supply agreement with Sojitz , which exports accounted for 52.2% of our total export sales PVC and EDC during 2004, compared to 64.9% during 2003 and 78.5% during 2002. Under this supply agreement, we have agreed to supply, and Sojitz has agreed to purchase, minimum annual volumes of 6,000 tons of PVC during this agreements term, and minimum annual volumes of EDC, which decline over time from 100,000 to 80,000 tons. The export receivables generated under this supply agreement are collateral for an export prepayment facility that we have entered into. Any PVC, EDC or caustic soda that is made available by our Vinyls Unit for export is sold in the spot market at the best available prices.
We use a variety of methods to distribute our exports, depending generally on the total size of the export market, including direct sales, independent distributors, negotiations conducted through trading companies and sales on the spot market.
We exported 7.8% of our PVC sales volume in 2004. Our export sales of PVC are focused principally on the Mercosul and Southeast Asian markets and to a lesser extent on Africa.
Prices and Sales Terms
We determine the domestic prices for our PVC resins with reference principally to the prices paid by third generation producers in Brazil for imports of PVC plus additional service charges. Our export price for PVC is generally equal to the international market price but also takes transportation costs into account. Delivery time, quality and technical service also affect the levels of sales of PVC resins. We establish our domestic price for caustic soda based on international market prices and prices charged by our three domestic competitors, taking into account any import duties and freight costs. Approximately 70% of our caustic soda sales are effected pursuant to agreements that are generally for one- to three-year terms and may include floor and ceiling prices. As with PVC, our export prices for EDC are generally determined according to international market prices but also take import duties and freight costs into account.
Prices that we charge for our vinyls products in the Brazilian market are traditionally higher than the prices that we obtain for our exports of these products. The difference in prices between the Brazilian and export markets results generally from:
Our customers in Brazil may pay in full on delivery or elect credit terms that require payment in full within seven to 90 days following delivery. We charge interest based on prevailing market rates to our customers in Brazil that elect longer payment options. Sales terms for exports generally require payment between 90 and 120 days following delivery. We usually require irrevocable letters of credit for export sales made on the spot market.
We and Solvay are the only two producers of PVC in Brazil. Solvays total Brazilian installed annual production capacity is 251,000 tons, compared to our annual production capacity of 475,000 tons. Solvay has announced that it will expand its annual PVC production capacity by 35,000 tons commencing in the second half of 2005. Solvays two production facilities are located in São Paulo and, therefore, are closer than our facilities to the primary PVC market in Brazil. However, we believe that our vertical production capabilities, our modern PVC suspension plants, our strong relationship with our customers and our technical assistance programs enable us to compete effectively with Solvay.
We also compete with importers of PVC. Approximately 14% of Brazils total PVC consumption in 2004 was imported, compared to approximately 13% in 2003 and approximately 20% in 2002. Domestically produced PVC is currently competitively priced with imported PVC after taking into account transportation costs and import duties. Solvay, which has an additional plant in Argentina, is also our principal competitor in the PVC market both in Brazil and elsewhere in South America.
In addition, we compete with other producers of thermoplastics that manufacture the same line of vinyls products or products that are substitutes for our vinyls product line. Thermoplastics principally consist of polyethylene and polypropylene and are used in certain applications as substitutes for PVC. Wood, glass and metals also are used in some cases as substitutes for PVC.
The four largest Brazilian producers of caustic soda account for approximately 92% of Brazilian production. Our company and Dow Chemical operate in this market throughout Brazil, while the other domestic producers of caustic soda generally operate on a local or regional basis. In 2004, approximately 31% of Brazils total caustic soda consumption was imported, compared to approximately 34% in 2003 and approximately 30% in 2002. We do not believe that imports of caustic soda will increase substantially because of the high cost of transporting caustic soda, which is usually sold in suspension form. In the caustic soda market, we compete mainly on the basis of price and timeliness of delivery.
Our principal competitors in the caustic soda market elsewhere in South America are Dow Chemical, Solvay and producers located on the U.S. Gulf Coast.
Business Development Unit
Our Business Development Unit accounted for R$620.8 million, or 5.0%, of the net sales revenue of all segments in 2004. Our Business Development Unit produces PET resin, DMT, caprolactam, cyclohexane, cyclohexanone and ammonium sulfate. Our Business Development Unit also manages certain of our minority equity investments, principally our investments in Petroflex and CETREL S.A.Empresa de Proteção Ambiental, or Cetrel, and manages certain of our ventures in the energy and environmental areas. In 2004, 42.6% of our Business Development Units net sales revenue was derived from the sale of PET products and 42.0% was derived from the sale of caprolactam.
In 2004, we estimate that we had an approximate 20% share of the Brazilian PET market, based on sales volumes. PET is used in manufacturing packaging for soft drinks, medications, cleaning products, mineral water and food products, and caprolactam is used in manufacturing Nylon-6 textile thread. We also produce DMT for use in PET production, ammonium sulfate for use as a fertilizer, and cyclohexane and cyclohexanone, both for use in paint solvents, pesticides, natural resins, oils and rubber. Our Business Development Unit conducts its manufacturing operations in two plants located in the Northeastern Complex.
Products of Our Business Development Unit
The following table sets forth a breakdown of the sales volume and net sales revenue of our Business Development Unit by product and by market for the years indicated.
Caprolactam is a raw material that forms the basis for the production of Nylon-6 fibers, engineering resins and film, and is a structural material in the motor and electronics industry. PET is one of the most widely used polymers in industry today and is used to make most plastic bottles, containers and textile fibers.
Production Facilities of Our Business Development Unit
Our Business Development Unit operates two plants at the Northeastern Complex. At December 31, 2004, our Business Development Unit plants had a total annual production capacity of 78,000 tons of PET and 62,000 tons of caprolactam.
The table below sets forth the location, primary products, annual production capacity at December 31, 2004, and annual production for the years presented for each of our Business Development Unit plants.
Raw Materials of Our Business Development Unit
The most significant direct cost associated with the production of caprolactam is the cost of benzene, which accounted for approximately 33% of our Business Development Units variable caprolactam production costs in 2004. All of the benzene that we use in producing caprolactam is supplied by our Basic Petrochemicals Unit.
The most significant direct cost associated with our production of PET is the cost of para-xylene, which accounted for approximately 42% of our Business Development Units variable PET production costs in 2004, as compared to 46% in 2003 and 47% in 2002. All of the para-xylene that we use in producing PET is supplied by our Basic Petrochemicals Unit.
Technology of Our Business Development Unit
We have entered into several non-exclusive agreements with a number of leading petrochemical companies to use technology for our Business Development Unit. The technology of our Business Development Unit includes:
We do not pay any continuing royalties under any of these license agreements, but we paid an initial fee under these license agreements. If any of these arrangements were terminated or no longer available to us, we believe that we would be able to replace the relevant technology with comparable or better technology from other sources.
Sales and Marketing of Business Development Unit
Our Business Development Unit sells its products primarily in northeastern Brazil, mainly to third generation petrochemical producers located in the Northeastern Complex. We determine the prices for the products of our Business Development Unit with reference to several market factors that include the prices paid by third generation producers for imports of these products and prevailing market prices in Brazil.
Our Business Development Unit sells its products to a highly concentrated customer base. Seven customers accounted for approximately 68% of our total PET sales during the year ended December 31, 2004. Our Business Development Units caprolactam customer base is even more concentrated, as one customer accounted for approximately 65% of our total caprolactam sales during the year ended December 31, 2004.
Monomeros Colombo Venezolanos S.A., or Monomeros, is the only manufacturer, other than our company, of caprolactam in South America, with an annual production capacity of 30,000 tons. Monomeros supplied approximately 4,000 tons of caprolactam in 2004, or approximately 8% of the caprolactam sold in Brazil (approximately 49,000 tons in 2004).
The textile industry consumed the most caprolactam in Brazil during 2004 (approximately 23,000 tons). However, consumption of caprolactam in Brazil in 2004 grew fastest in the engineering plastics and plastic films segments of the petrochemical industry, which consumed an aggregate amount of approximately 16,000 tons of caprolactam in 2004. The industrial wire industry consumed the remaining caprolactam in Brazil in 2004.
There are three other producers of PET in Brazil: Rhodia-ster S.A., or Rhodia-ster (a subsidiary of Mossi & Ghisolfi Group); Vicunha Têxtil S.A., or Vicunha Têxtil; and Ledervin Indústria e Comércio Ltda., or Ledervin. In 2004, Rhodia-ster, Vicunha Têxtil and Ledervin had annual production capacities of 290,000 tons, 24,000 tons and 9,000 tons, respectively, as compared to our annual production capacity of 70,000 tons. In addition, M&G Finanziaria Industriale S.p.A. has announced that it will build a PET plant in Ipojuca, Pernambuco, with an annual production capacity of 450,000 tons of PET, which is expected to commence operations in late 2006. We
also compete with importers of PET. Approximately 32% of Brazils total PET consumption in 2004 was imported as compared to approximately 37% in 2003 and 35% in 2002. Although international producers of PET have greater economies of scale than our company, we are able to compete with these producers due to the high transportation costs and import duties applicable to PET imports. Our PET production is aimed principally at the bottled water segment of the PET market, and we believe that our quality products will continue to remain competitive in the Brazilian PET market.
Our Business Development Unit also manages certain of our minority equity investments, including our investment in Petroflex.
At December 31, 2004, we owned 20.1% of the total and voting share capital of Petroflex, a producer of synthetic rubber. We account for our interest in Petroflex in our Brazilian GAAP financial statements using the equity method. Petroflex is the leading producer of synthetic rubber in Latin America and produces approximately 360,000 tons of more than 70 types of elastomers per year. Petroflex operates three plants in Brazil located in Duque de Caxias, Rio de Janeiro; Cabo, Pernambuco; and Triunfo, Rio Grande do Sul. Petroflex sells its products to customers in approximately 70 countries throughout the world. Petroflex purchases butadiene from us from which it produces styrene-butadiene, polybutadiene, liquid hidroxylated polybutadiene and other elastomers.
Petroflex was formed in 1976 with Petroquisa as its majority shareholder. In 1992, as part of the Brazilian governments efforts to privatize the Brazilian petrochemical industry, Petroquisa auctioned a portion of its equity interest in Petroflex to private investors. At December 31, 2004, we and Suzano Química Ltda. each owned 20.1% of the voting and total share capital of Petroflex, Resitec Indústria Química Ltda. owned 13.0% of Petroflexs voting share capital and UniparUnião de Indústrias Petroquímicas S.A. owned 10.1% of Petroflexs voting share capital.
The main customers of Petroflex are manufacturers of tires, shoes, adhesives and sealants. The major raw materials used in Petroflexs production process are butadiene and styrene. Petroflex purchases part of its raw materials requirements from our company. Due to high naphtha prices in 2004, the price of butadiene increased by 8.4% in the international market and the price of styrene increased by 8.0%. However, the recovery of synthetic rubber prices in reais, due to increases in international market prices, allowed Petroflex to pass on these increased costs to its customers.
In 2004, Petroflexs net income was R$98.3 million, compared to net income of R$60.5 million in 2003 and R$29.7 million in 2002, as adjusted to conform to our accounting policies.
Jointly Controlled Companies
At December 31, 2004, we owned 29.5% of the voting and total share capital of Copesul, the cracker based in the Southern Complex. We account for our interest in Copesul in our Brazilian GAAP financial statements using the proportional consolidation method.
Copesul is the second largest petrochemical cracker in Brazil based on production capacity, with approximately 39% of Brazilian production capacity of ethylene. It provides petrochemical feedstocks to second generation petrochemical producers located in the Southern Complex, including our Polyolefins Units plants located there. Copesuls manufacturing operations in the Southern Complex and the products that it produces are similar to the products of our Basic Petrochemicals Unit.
Copesuls annual ethylene production capacity is 1,135,000 tons, the equivalent of approximately 39% of Brazilian total production capacity for this raw material, and its annual propylene production capacity is
581,000 tons. In 2004, Copesul produced 1,119.0 thousand tons of ethylene and 590.0 thousand tons of propylene. Actual production of Copesuls plants, like the plants in our Basic Petrochemicals Unit, may exceed their stated annual production capacity.
Copesul was formed in 1976 with Petroquisa as its majority shareholder and commenced operations in 1982. In May 1992, as part of the Brazilian governments efforts to privatize the Brazilian petrochemical industry, Petroquisa auctioned a portion of its interest in Copesul to private investors. At December 31, 2004, a consortium, including the Odebrecht Group and Ipiranga and its affiliates, owned 58.9% of the total share capital of Copesul. Petroquisa continued to own 15.6% of the total share capital of Copesul.
The main customers of Copesul are the second generation petrochemical