Archive | March, 2012

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Why Should Q2 Be Any Better?

 

By John Richardson

THE question being asked during the first quarter of this year was, “Why shouldn’t Chinese chemicals demand come roaring back after a disappointing 2011?”

The relevant question now, as we move into Q2, is, “Why should …

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Butadiene Market Standoff

By Malini Hariharan

Just days after a recovery in butadiene prices, downstream synthetic rubber producers are once again threatening to cut production as weak demand has pushed them in to a tight corner.

Asian major Korea Kumho Petrochemical is looking at …

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New Policies Needed To Restore Growth

Politicians seem to be floundering as they seek to restore growth to the Western economy. Their prescriptions swing between austerity and economic stimulus as they argue over what has gone wrong.

But in chapter 10 of our Boom, Gloom & …

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North America’s Oil and Gas Potential

By Malini Hariharan

The energy landscape in North America is rapidly changing. After shale gas the focus has shifted to rising oil production from various unconventional sources, which has prompted some commentators to predict that the region will regain its …

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Global Polymers Demand Up 4.5% In 2011

By Malini Hariharan

Despite challenging market conditions in 2011, the global polymers industry managed to post demand growth of 4.5%, with the largest increase recorded by polyvinyl chloride (PVC) at 6.2% and linear-low density polyethylene (LLDPE) at 5.8%, estimates Fabrizio …

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India: Muddling Through Won’t Do

By John Richardson

Indian friends of the blog, many of whom work in the country’s chemicals industry, have long expressed their view that their country will always muddle through.

Their trust in government to solve long-standing infrastructure and logistics problems …

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The Butadiene Rollercoaster

By John Richardson

The remarkable rollercoaster that is butadiene, and its derivatives, continues.Although the synthetic rubber market for tyres in China appears to be strengthening, acrylonitrile butadiene styrene (ABS) remains under pressure.

And, in a reflection of what is a …

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Threat of Oil “Permafrost”

By John Richardson

Saudi Arabian oil minister Ali al-Naimi on Tuesday did his best to calm the oil markets by arguing that the kingdom had met all its customers’ requests for crude, and was ready to raise output to full …

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China Synthetic Fibres Fall Further

By John Richardson

CHINA’S synthetic fibres chain continues to show serious signs of distress as a result of weak domestic and export demand, according to my ICIS colleagues, Judith Wang and Becky Zhang.

Traders in monoethylene glycol (MEG) must have believed …

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China’s Shale Gas Potential

By John Richardson

THE shale-gas revolution, which, of course, is already well underway in the US, could also have major implications for petrochemicals in China.

China has 1,275 trillion cubic feet of recoverable shale-gas reserves, according to the Energy Information …

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