Construction crisis? What crisis? China leads the way

As the Middle East struggles to find labour and raw material supply with contractors’ order books bursting at the seams, the Chinese seem to have no difficulty in executing their projects.
See below for detailed analysis of what’s happening with …

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The fallout for petrochemicals from Iraq

As everyone focuses on when the next downturn might arrive, macro issues such as the implications of a likely US withdrawal from Iraq are rarely publicly discussed.
But if I were on the board of any company making investment decisions, …

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China attempts to move up the value chain

Petrochemical markets are being badly ruffled by two recent Chinese government decisions.
In late June, there was the decision to change the VAT export rebate system for yuan-priced product.
And then this week there was a widening of the deposit …

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China’s crackers are on track. Is this bad news?

The consultants, traders and producers I spoke to last week insist that the current wave of new Chinese ethylene capacity due on stream in the current Five-Year Plan (2006-10), Download file
is more or less on track to be completed …

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China will choke itself to death

I think it’s about time that the developing world stopped saying “you did it, so why can’t we?” when the West raises concerns over rising pollution levels in China, India etc.
In the “good” old days my home country, the …

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Rebranding the chemicals industry

The industry we work either for or with is about as popular as George Bush Junior at I was about to say a wedding party in the Gaza Strip; but actually probably about as popular as George Bush at just …

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Are We On A Different Planet?

“Hello, my name is John Richardson.
I had an accident, and I woke up in 1973.
Am I mad, in a coma, or back in time?
Whatever’s happened, it’s like I’ve landed on a different planet.”
Before you think I’ve …

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No more pessimism for a couple of weeks

You maybe relieved, on the day the Chinese government introduces measures to cool stock markets resulting in sharp fall in the Shanghai Exchange, that I am going on leave for a couple of weeks.
Perhaps I’ll feel the sun on …

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Another Asian Financial Crisis, this time triggered by China?

After yesterday’s optimism, yet more pessimism. I remember 1997. Don’t underestimate the dange of contagion if China’s stock market bubble does burst – as the likes of Alan Greenspan are predicting

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Is this the death of cycles?

Quite possibly, yes, despite my instinctiive pessimism. Perhaps emerging markets such as China and India have reached such a critical mass that no matter how much capacity is brought on stream, it will be easily absorbed.
Or maybe some disaster …

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