17 November 2008 13:24 [Source: ICIS news]
RIO DE JANEIRO (ICIS news)--US chemical trade could grind to a halt in the next 12 months, dragged by lack of demand amid a weaker global economy, a trader said on Monday.
“We might as well all go fishing in 2009 because it does not look like there will be much else to do,” the source said on the sidelines of the 28th Latin American Petrochemical Annual Meeting (APLA).
The trader said it is difficult to do business in the ?xml:namespace>
“It is all gloom and doom right now and no-one really knows what will happen,” the source said.
That outlook was shared by several other delegates at APLA, most expecting the brewing global recession to significantly impact the petrochemical industry next year.
Producers are having to cut back hard to deal with the new situation, with Europe-based LyondellBasell mulling a 15% cut of its workforce.
“And there will be other massive lay-offs in the industry, there is no question about it,” the source said.
Market participants expect no recovery for petrochemical in the short term.
“Things will not improve until mid-2009 in a best-case scenario,” one consultant said, adding that a recovery will depend on how the
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