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How To Battle For Value In Oversupplied Markets

By John Richardson

FOR the moment all is good, as the chart above illustrates, which details the premiums that C6 metallocene-grade linear-low density (LLDPE) have enjoyed over standard commodity grade C4 LLDPE in the key China market.

The October 2010 …

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The New World Of Demand, Trade And Competition

By John Richardson

TOMORROW nearly always ended up being better than today for the polymers industry, thanks to the resilience of demand growth during the Economic Supercycle.

What also made life easy was the assumption that global free trade would, …

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China And A Breakdown In Free Trade: Scenarios For Petrochemicals

By John Richardson

MY blog post last Friday, on the threat to the petrochemicals industry of a retreat in global free trade, has gained a great deal of interest. This is good as this is an essential debate.

Today I …

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As Global Free Trade Unwinds, Where You Have Built Becomes Critical

By John Richardson

THE assumption that global free trade will continue to grow has successfully underpinned the strategy of petrochemicals producers for many years. Companies have been able to plan new capacities in just about any location secure in the …

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Oil Below $30, Trade Barriers Etc: Implications for US Polyethylene

By John Richardson

FOUR years ago it seemed like an absolute “no brainer”.

Just about everyone thought that China’s economy was going to expand at double digit annual rates, virtually forever.

You also had the surge in ethane availability in …

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Britain’s EU Exit Vote Reflects Lack of Trust In Expert Opinion

 

By John Richardson

MOST politicians, central bank governors, economists and business leaders told everyone that there was no way that the US housing market could drag the world into a global financial crisis.

Then we were told that China’s …

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China PP Import Decline Challenges Global Markets

By John Richardson

THE latest data on China’s polypropylene (PP) imports should set alarm bells ringing in polyolefin company board rooms:…

China’s PP production was up by 14% in January-April 2016 versus the same four months last year, with imports

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Asian Polyethylene: Challenge The New Paradigm

By John Richardson

IT would be very interesting to go back to 2000 and compare the strength of positive sentiment towards the future of the Asian polyethylene (PE) industry to the above chart.

The chart shows spreads between naphtha costs, …

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China’s PP Import Decline: Did you See This Coming?

By John Richardson

THE smart people in the polypropylene (PP) business will have already adjusted their strategies in response to evidence, from 2009 onwards, that China was very aggressively expanding its PP capacities.

They would have tracked the rapid rate …

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Go Where The Money Is: Sanitation And Water

By John Richardson

HOW do you define global progress? Is it the number of extra people each year who are able to afford to buy a smartphone, or is it the number of additional people who are given access to …

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