19 February 2009 16:20 [Source: ICIS news]
By Mark Watts
LONDON (ICIS news)--Leading figures in Europe’s chemicals industry on Thursday outlined three key initiatives for securing the future of a strong chemicals manufacturing base in ?xml:namespace>
In the first of three recommendations, the HLG said the European chemicals industry should remain a major solution provider for the problem of global climate change and a major contributor to the reduction of CO2 emissions.
The HLG added that it was essential for a competitive regional industry to have access to sufficient high quality renewable raw materials at world market prices.
Thirdly, it said the industry needed a good regulatory framework, in terms of better regulation, proper consultation of stakeholders, solid impact assessments, improved communication by the authorities and more harmonised and correct application of the agreed rules.
“In the current economic and financial crisis, the HLG conclusions and recommendations provide a vision for the long-term viability of our industry, said Christian Jourquin, president of the European Chemical Industry Council (Cefic) and CEO of Belgian producer Solvay.
“We cannot however overlook the present short-term difficulties which could undermine the fulfilment of this vision,” he said.
“We must now work together with the European Commission and the member states to ensure that short-term difficulties will be overcome and to create the right conditions for the necessary investments to be made to secure the future of our industry,” Jourquin added.
The HLG warned that competitors around the global were catching up with
Therefore, it said, the strategic agenda for the European chemicals industry has to build on better legislation, affordable and reliable energy sources, fair and open trade conditions and increased skills and innovation capacities.
The European chemicals industry represents about 30% of world production, with a workforce of 1.2 million people and annual sales of around €537bn ($674bn).
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