21 October 2008 15:15 [Source: ICIS news]
By Will Beacham
LONDON (ICIS news)--The chemicals business of UK oil major BP is in the midst of a global collapse in demand for its products which is expected to last at least until the end of the year, a company executive said on Tuesday. ?xml:namespace>
Demand was falling across the portfolio and in all the company’s key geographical regions, said Steven Welch, chief operating officer, international business refining and marketing segment.
The fall-off, which became more noticeable around six weeks ago, had led to zero or even negative demand growth for some products, he said at a press meeting.
The company was still analysing how much of the downturn was due to the global economic slowdown and how much was down to de-stocking by its customers, Welch added.
“In Europe and the ?xml:namespace>
The news was also bleak for acetic acid, another important product area where the company controlled about 25% of the global market, he said.
“The slowdown in building, construction and home improvement use means that year on year we expect [acetic acid] demand to be somewhat negative in Europe and
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