Global chem production growth slows in March – industry council

27 April 2012 22:13  [Source: ICIS news]

HOUSTON (ICIS)--A gauge of global chemical production leveled off in March compared with the same time last year, following three consecutive gains, the American Chemistry Council (ACC) said on Friday.

The ACC’s Global Chemical Production Regional Index (Global CPRI) for March was up only 1.5% year on year, compared with gains ranging from 1.9% to 2.3% in the previous three months.

The index is based on a three-month moving average including January, February and March in order to smooth monthly fluctuations.

Still, the March index stood at 112.7% of its average 2007 levels, the ACC said.

“Most leading indicators of global industrial activity signal a tentative recovery and perhaps the worst is over,” the council said.

The North American index for March rose by 1.4% year on year.

North American production “has generally been on an upward trend since the December 2008 low but slowed during mid-2011”, the ACC said.

“Recent data for the US in March show that overall production rose. With basic chemicals, there were gains in inorganic chemicals, bulk petrochemicals and organic intermediates, synthetic rubber and made-made fibres; with weakness in plastic resins.”

The Asia-Pacific region showed a March gain of 4.4% year on year.

“Positive year-earlier comparisons are still seen in China and Korea, as well as in Malaysia, New Zealand and the Philippines,” the ACC said. “Compared to a year ago, there was weakness in Australia, Bangladesh, India, Japan, Pakistan, Singapore, Taiwan, and Thailand.”

March production in western Europe was down 2.6% year on year, with weakness in Belgium, France, Germany, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Luxembourg, Norway, Portugal, Spain and the UK, the ACC said..

Strong gains occurred in Denmark and Switzerland, the index showed.

Production in central and eastern Europe was down by 0.9%, while Africa showed 3.6% growth.

March output in Latin America was up 1.3% year on year, the index showed.

Production Volumes

(% change year on year on a three-month moving average)

 

 

Dec

11

Jan

12

Feb

12

March12


World Total – Chemistry

2.3

2.0

1.9

1.5

North America

0.6

0.5

1.1

1.4

Latin America

-0.7

0.1

1.0

1.3

Western Europe

-1.1

-1.6

-1.9

-2.6

Central & Eastern Europe

0.9

-0.1

-0.8

-0.9

Africa & Middle East

5.2

5.1

4.8

3.6

Asia-Pacific

5.8

5.1

4.8

4.4

Information provided by the ACC

Paul Hodges studies key influencers shaping the chemical industry in Chemicals and the Economy


By: Brian Ford
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