Trade protectionism is on the rise around the world, as the blog forecast in its Budget Outlook back in October.
It suggested that "arguments about the 'export of jobs' will increase", and argued that "chemical companies will need to keep a close eye on the political arena, as they operate in a complex value chain, and may not otherwise appreciate the potential impact of a development in a key supplying or consuming industry".
Now the GPCA (Gulf Petrochemicals and Chemicals Association) is holding a high-level workshop on the subject in Bahrain next month. It notes "there have been a number of antidumping cases brought against petrochemical and chemical producers in the GCC (Gulf Co-operation Council) recently". It says this creates a need to discuss "this very relevant and important issue".
The chemical industry has gained enormous benefits from the growth of free trade over the past 20 years. And it has passed on these benefits to consumers around the world, in the shape of lower prices, product innovation and higher quality production. It is therefore good to see the GPCA starting to take a lead on this important issue.