28 February 2013 11:13 [Source: ICIS news]
LONDON (ICIS)--EU chemicals production fell 1.5% in 2012 with output at the year end 6.2% below the 2007 peak, Cefic said on Thursday.
The EU's chemical industry confidence indicator was also low in January, the trade group noted, with the data pointing to a weakening assessment of order-book levels.
The production decline for the full year was below the 2.0% fall forecast by the trade group in December because of above-zero output growth in the fourth quarter.
The EU chemicals production index for December was up 1.2% compared with December 2011, and the third consecutive month of above-zero index readings, Cefic added.
The data record changes in a chemical production index with a 2005 base.
“Petrochemicals jumped 3.4% year on year in December. Consumer chemicals and polymers output rose by 2.6% and 2.4% per cent respectively,” Cefic said.
Basic inorganics production was down 2% and speciality chemicals production down 0.2% in the month.
EU chemical prices rose by 2.7% in 2012 and were up 3.0% in December. Petrochemicals prices were up 1.4% for the full year.
Trade data are only available up to November but show that the EU net chemicals trade surplus in the first 11 months of the year was €45.9bn ($25.8bn), up €9.4bn - or 26% compared with the same period in 2011 - largely on a 27% jump in the net chemicals trade surplus with the North American Free Trade Area (NAFTA) region.
($1 = €0.76)
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