ACC CEO: US chems to have advantage for ‘at least a decade’

16 January 2013 20:50  [Source: ICIS news]

NEW YORK (ICIS)--The US chemical industry will have a competitive advantage for at least a decade because of shale gas and should move quickly to take advantage, the chief executive of the American Chemistry Council (ACC) said on Wednesday.

“Because we have a technological and infrastructure-based competitive advantage for at least a decade, it is important for the US to capitalise on this once-in-a-generation opportunity quickly,” said Cal Dooley, CEO of the ACC.

Dooley spoke at a meeting of the Societe de Chimie Industrielle in New York.

“Every CEO in the chemical industry is talking about making major new investments in the US, and there is only one reason why – shale gas,” he said.

Announced ethylene capacity expansions in the US, including seven new world-scale crackers, amount to 38% of existing capacity.

About 85% of US chemical production is based on natural gas feedstocks such as ethane and propane, whereas much of the rest of the world relies on oil-based naphtha, said Dooley.

On the demand side, innovations in the automotive sector bode well for a higher chemical component in vehicles.

“All the new concept cars being introduced at the Detroit auto show that involve reducing weight do it with more plastics. We see an exciting future for the auto industry,” Dooley said.

By: Joseph Chang
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