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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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Deflation Threatens Asia’s Ethylene-Polyethylene Link

By John Richardson

AS you can see from the above chart, ever since April 1997, when we first started providing price quotes for spot Northeast Asian (NEA) high-density polyethylene (HDPE) film grade, it has been spot ethylene rather than spot …

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Too Good To Last for Asian Petchems? Yes

By John Richardson

IT has been a fantastic few months for the integrated Asian polyethylene (PE) producers as the above chart illustrates.

You can see that the average price for naphtha was $533/tonne CFR Japan in April. This compared with …

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Ageing Populations And Fitting Two Billion Into One Billion

By John Richardson

THE above chart is of absolutely critical importance for anybody who is serious about estimating both the strength and nature of future global demand growth for chemicals.

If you are not a serious analysts then, sure, ignore …

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The New Global Financial Crisis: Emerging Market Bonds

By John Richardson

EXACTLY how the new global financial crisis will gather momentum is becoming clearer by the day.

Greatly adding to this clarity was the latest Bank for International Settlements (BIS) quarterly report, which was released earlier this week.…

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China Reforms: The Global Implications

By John Richardson

IT can feel logical to assume that the fundamentals of the petrochemicals business in Asia haven’t really changed.

When you think about it, apart from a brief interruption in the region’s success story during the Asian Financial …

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China’s About Turn: The Seven Global Implications

By John Richardson

HISTORIANS will end up concluding that falling emerging market currencies and stock markets – the prelude to what could be a full-blown crisis –  is really about China and not about the US Federal Reserve. The Fed …

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“Fragile Five” Now “The Exposed Eight”

By John Richardson

IT used to be just the “Fragile Five” – Brazil, India, Indonesia, South Africa and Turkey.

But last week, the Financial Times, drawing on data and analysis from Schroders, added three more countries to the list of …

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Gas, Gas, And Perhaps Even More Gas

By John Richardson

THE global petrochemicals industry is stepping on the gas as it accelerates both capacity expansions and the restructuring of existing assets. Apologies for the pun.

In the US, of course, some 25m tonnes/year of ethylene capacity is …

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